How High Can the Retirement Age Go?

retireesAn interesting article from the NY Times that considers the impacts of ageing populations on welfare systems:

“Social welfare systems are under pressure everywhere in the developed world. But it’s all relative. French workers took to the streets this week to protest their government’s plan to raise the retirement age from 60 — yes, 60 — to 61 or 62. In Spain, the International Monetary Fund has recommended that the government raise the official retirement age from 65 to 67 and then tie it to increases in longevity rates.

In the United States, where private-sector workers born in 1960 or later already have to work to 67 to gain full Social Security benefits, government officials are looking for ways to reduce the costs of ballooning public sector pensions and are pressuring unions to agree to later retirement dates.

How high can or should the retirement age go, and should it be tied to increases in life expectancy? What will changes in retirement patterns mean for the United States, compared with Western Europe?”

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