Self-Employment Around Retirement Age

47 Pages Posted: 18 Oct 2010

See all articles by Stefan Hochguertel

Stefan Hochguertel

VU University Amsterdam; Tinbergen Institute

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 1, 2010


This paper uses panel data from the pan-European SHARE survey to study labor market behavior of older male self-employed visa-vis wage employed workers. We find the self-employed to work longer hours, to be more flexible in their hours allocation, and to retire later in all countries.

We relate these differences in observed behavior to individual characteristics, economic resources, and to documented cross-national variation in labor market and social security institutions. Differential incentives matter for the retirement behavior of the self-employed.

We also provide evidence of the self-employed not wanting to retire as early as possible, and contrast these expectation data with realized retirement transitions. The overall picture that emerges is that older self-employed have a very strong labor market attachment and they use their degrees of freedom to work more and retire later accordingly.

Keywords: self-employment, labor supply, retirement, pensions, Europe, institutions

JEL Classification: J14, J22, J26, L26

Suggested Citation

Hochguertel, Stefan, Self-Employment Around Retirement Age (July 1, 2010). Netspar Discussion Paper No. 07/2010-030, Available at SSRN: or

Stefan Hochguertel (Contact Author)

VU University Amsterdam ( email )

Dept Econ (FEWEB)
De Boelelaan 1105
1081HV Amsterdam
+31 20 59 86033 (Phone)
+31 20 59 89870 (Fax)

Tinbergen Institute

Gustav Mahlerplein 117
Amsterdam, 1082 MS

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