The biggest retirement trend of 2016 may be that people age 65 and over really are, finally, retiring.
We’ve all heard that retirement at 65 is no longer a given because, after all, 65 is the new 55. If you’re wondering who is saying that, it is mostly baby boomers, those born between 1946 and 1964. The members of the biggest generation are now reaching age 65 in record numbers. And they have no intention of going gently into that good night.
Whether they are retired, semi-retired or starting second careers for the fun of it, their choices will dominate American culture for a long time to come. (See How Baby Boomers Will Change The Way Others Retire.) The number of baby boomers over age 55 hit 56.9 million in 2015, and by 2020 will hit a staggering 71.3 million. Following are a few of the choices boomers are making.
They’re Finally Retiring
Younger workers have been known to kvetch that baby boomers are hogging the upper rungs of the ladder in the workforce. By their sheer numbers, they dominated throughout their careers, but the Great Recession that began in 2008 put the kibosh on retirement plans for many. (See Are More Baby Boomers Returning to Work After Retirement?)
Well, the recession is behind us now and so, apparently, is the reluctance of baby boomers to retire. As of 2015, there were still some 45 million baby boomers in the workforce, but as an age group they are now a third-place minority, behind the so-called Generation X and the Millennial generation. That’s according to an analysis of the American workforce by Pew Research Center, based on the latest U.S. census data.
On the Road Again
If you want to know what those retirees will be up to, you’ll need satellite tracking. A new survey from AARP says that fully 99% of baby boomers are planning to travel for the fun of it in 2016, and they have an average of four to five trips in mind. That’s a lot of moving around, since there are 76 million of them, or about 28% of the population.