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What Makes Retirees Happier: A Gradual or 'Cold Turkey' Retirement?

  • Calvo, Esteban
  • Haverstick, Kelly
  • Sass, Steven

This study explores the factors that affect an individual’s happiness while transitioning into retirement. Recent studies highlight gradual retirement as an attractive option to older workers as they approach full retirement. However, it is not clear whether phasing or cold turkey makes for a happier retirement. Using longitudinal data from the Health and Retirement Study, this study explores what shapes the change in happiness between the last wave of full employment and the first wave of full retirement. Results suggest that what really matters is not the type of transition (gradual retirement or cold turkey), but whether people perceive the transition as chosen or forced.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/5607/1/MPRA_paper_5607.pdf
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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 5607.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:5607
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  17. Robert Hutchens, 2007. "Phased Retirement: Problems and Prospects," Work Opportunity Briefs wob_8, Center for Retirement Research, revised Feb 2007.
  18. Ruhm, Christopher J, 1990. "Bridge Jobs and Partial Retirement," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(4), pages 482-501, October.
  19. Rafael Di Tella & Robert MacCulloch, 2006. "Some Uses of Happiness Data in Economics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 25-46, Winter.
  20. Sheung-Tak Cheng & Alfred C. M. Chan, 2006. "Relationship With Others and Life Satisfaction in Later Life: Do Gender and Widowhood Make a Difference?," Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Gerontological Society of America, vol. 61(1), pages P46-P53.
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