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The Retirement Expectations of Middle-Aged Individuals

Author

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  • Cobb-Clark, Deborah A.

    () (University of Sydney)

  • Stillman, Steven

    () (Free University of Bozen/Bolzano)

Abstract

We use the first three waves of the Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey to examine the retirement plans of middle-aged workers (aged 45–55). Our results indicate that approximately two-thirds of men and more than half of women appear to be making standard retirement plans. At the same time, more than one in five individuals seem to have delayed their retirement planning and approximately one in ten either do not know when they expect to retire or expect to never retire. Retirement plans are closely related to current labor market position. Specifically, forming expectations about the age at which one will leave the labor market appears to be easier for workers in jobs with well-defined pension benefits and standard retirement ages. Moreover, those who report that they do not know when they expect to retire do in fact appear to face greater uncertainty in their retirement planning. Those who anticipate working forever seem to do so out of concerns about the adequacy of their retirement incomes rather than out of increased job satisfaction or a heightened desire to remain employed. Finally, men alter their retirement plans in response to labor market shocks, while women are more sensitive to their own and their partners' health changes.

Suggested Citation

  • Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Stillman, Steven, 2006. "The Retirement Expectations of Middle-Aged Individuals," IZA Discussion Papers 2449, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2449
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Sinning, Mathias, 2007. "Wealth and Asset Holdings of Immigrants in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 3089, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Thomas K. Bauer & Deborah A. Cobb‐Clark & Vincent A. Hildebrand & Mathias G. Sinning, 2011. "A Comparative Analysis Of The Nativity Wealth Gap," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 49(4), pages 989-1007, October.
    3. Mathias Sinning, 2007. "Wealth and Asset Holdings of Immigrants in Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 0030, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    4. repec:zbw:rwirep:0030 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Diana Warren, 2008. "Retirement Expectations and Labour Force Transitions: The Experience of the Baby Boomer Generation," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2008n24, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    6. Deborah A. Cobb‐Clark & Vincent A. Hildebrand, 2011. "Portfolio Allocation In The Face Of A Means‐Tested Public Pension," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 57(3), pages 536-560, September.
    7. Helen Levy & Kristin Seefeldt, 2008. "How Do Lower-Income Families Think about Retirement?," Working Papers wp195, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
    8. Diana Warren, 2013. "Retirement Decisions of Couples: The Impact of Spousal Characteristics and Preferences on the Timing of Retirement," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2013n41, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    9. James Enright & Grant M Scobie, 2010. "Healthy, Wealthy and Working: Retirement Decisions of Older New Zealanders," Treasury Working Paper Series 10/02, New Zealand Treasury.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    retirement; middle-aged workers; expectations;

    JEL classification:

    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • J80 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - General

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