Behavioral and Psychological Aspects of the Retirement Decision

Social Security Bulletin, Vol. 71, No. 4, pp. 15-32, 2011

18 Pages Posted: 4 Nov 2011 Last revised: 25 Apr 2015

See all articles by Melissa Knoll

Melissa Knoll

Social Security Administration - Office of Retirement Policy

Date Written: November 1, 2011

Abstract

The majority of research on the retirement decision has focused on the health and wealth aspects of retirement. Such research concludes that people in better health and those enjoying a higher socioeconomic status tend to work longer than their less healthy and less wealthy counterparts. While financial and health concerns are a major part of the retirement decision, there are other issues that may affect the decision to retire that are unrelated to an individual's financial and health status. Judgment and decision-making and behavioral-economics research suggests that there may be a number of behavioral factors influencing the retirement decision. The author reviews and highlights such factors and offers a unique perspective on potential determinants of retirement behavior, including anchoring and framing effects, affective forecasting, hyperbolic discounting, and the planning fallacy. The author then describes findings from previous research and draws novel connections between existing decision-making research and the retirement decision.

Keywords: information, knowledge, uncertainty and intertemporal choice and growth

JEL Classification: D8, D9

Suggested Citation

Knoll, Melissa, Behavioral and Psychological Aspects of the Retirement Decision (November 1, 2011). Social Security Bulletin, Vol. 71, No. 4, pp. 15-32, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1953404

Melissa Knoll (Contact Author)

Social Security Administration - Office of Retirement Policy ( email )

Washington, DC 20254
United States

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