How are older workers’ employment prospects affected when there are fewer younger workers?

July 17, 2019

“This [project] is prompted by a question I’ve been asked by many reporters, which is ‘With larger, older cohorts and relatively scarce younger workers, will employers shift to employing more older workers for one reason or another?’” investigator David Neumark…

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Solvency: potential solutions meet a complex world

June 18, 2019

Many proposed reforms might have varying affects on retirees. In the 1940s, if a man lived to age 65, the full retirement age (FRA), he would, on average, live another 12.7 years in retirement, while a woman would live another…

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Visual representation of number of OASDI beneficiaries per 100 workers paying OASDI taxes. In 1945, there were two beneficiaries for every 100 covered workers. In 2016, there were 35 beneficiaries per 100 covered workers. Source: 2017 Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the Federal Old-age and Survivors insurance and the Federal Disability Insurance Trust Funds, Table IV.B3.—Covered Workers and Beneficiaries, Calendar Years 1945-2095.
Potential trust fund fix: Encouraging longer work

May 21, 2019

Sometimes researchers create structural economic models to help understand the Old Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) and Disability Insurance (DI) trust funds’ solvency issues and to test possible solutions. Taking information (data) from real life, they build a picture of…

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A beginner’s guide to the Social Security trust funds’ solvency

April 9, 2019

How to fix the solvency issues of the Old Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) and Disability Insurance (DI) trust funds, often referred to as the Social Security trust funds (OASDI), continues to concern policymakers and voters alike. As a pay-as-you-go…

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Retirement: It’s a Family Affair

March 14, 2019

While research often focuses on the retirement bound individual or couple, few people live their lives with no outside influences. A parent’s desire to lighten a child’s burden could have a negative impact on the parent’s retirement security, and such…

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MRRC to become MRDRC (Michigan Retirement and Disability Research Center)

October 22, 2018

In September, Michigan Retirement Research Center (MRRC) was awarded its fifth five-year cooperative agreement renewal from the Social Security Administration. MRRC Director and Principle Investigator John Laitner explained that as part of the grant proposal, MRRC agreed to include disability…

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Making sense of health’s role in employment

September 18, 2018

Despite the growing number of studies and the increasing availability of detailed data, researchers haven’t developed a consensus on how health affects employment. This is partly explained by the wide variety in datasets (how they are collected, how they measure…

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Laboring longer: Second careers, unretirement, and bridge jobs keep older Americans at work

August 22, 2018

As the U.S. population ages, often in better health than our parents and grandparents, the notion of retirement is starting to evolve, and retirement paths have become as variable as ice cream flavors: One person may partake of the traditional…

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Bar chart shows percentage of couples eligible for Social Security Spousal Benefits by claimant age and couple type. Age 45-54 Age 55-64 Age 65+ Hetero married 46.1 53.5 52 Same-sex married male 36.2 47.8 45.5 Same-sex married female 37.9 46.3 51.8
To have and to hold: Researchers investigate how same-sex marriage might affect Social Security spousal benefits

June 7, 2018

June 26 marks the third anniversary of nationwide, legal same-sex marriage. The estimated 4 percent of the U.S. population that is lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB) can now benefit from the same legal status as married heterosexuals with all that…

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Are lifetime earnings a product of the times? Veterans who entered the civilian market in periods of high unemployment have lower earnings for over a decade, have lower levels of prospective Social Security wealth, and appear to delay retirement (perhaps to compensate for the negative effects experienced early in their careers), and have higher levels of family instability. These results suggest that young workers who entered the labor market during the Great Recession are likely to experience negative effects throughout the first phases of their career; indeed, some of the effects could influence today’s workers through retirement.
Tough timing: Study looks at veterans to pin down the long-term effects of entering the labor market during a recession

May 16, 2018

Previous research has found that young people entering the job market during a weak economy face lingering negative effects, earning less than workers who joined the labor market during, for example, a period of low unemployment. Such effects can last…

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