The Costs of Early Retirement in the OECD
Institute of Economic Studies Working Paper No. W01:02
18 Pages Posted: 22 Jun 2001
Date Written: May 2001
Despite substantial increases in longevity, the age of retirement in the industrialized countries has steadily fallen throughout most of the 20th century. In 13 OECD countries, the employment-population ratio of 55-64-year-old males fell by an average of more than 12 percentage points between 1979 and 1998. Similarly, labor force participation rates for those 65 and above have fallen significantly. The economic cost of the low labor market participation, in terms of lost output, benefit payments, and lower tax base is substantial. However, part of the cost of low labor market participation is cyclical or structural and, hence, separate from the costs of early retirement. This paper develops a simple framework to assess the specific costs of early retirement and applies it using data from the OECD countries.
Keywords: Early retirement, labor supply/demand, foregone output
JEL Classification: H55, J14, J21, J26
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation