Skip to comments.Baby Boomers Give Up, Drop Out of U.S. Labor Force
Posted on 02/12/2014 9:08:22 PM PST by smokingfrog
When Robin McLanes generation hit public schools in the 1950s, there were never enough classrooms or teachers to accommodate the bulge, she said. So shes not surprised about the latest shock that boomers are delivering to the U.S. economy.
People all around me, relatives and friends, are either retiring, or theyre finding its very difficult to find work anywhere from 55 on, said the 65-year-old, who lives in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and retired from her job as a high school literacy specialist in June. For me, I was ready to move on.
The share of Americans in the labor force, known as the participation rate, is hovering around an almost four-decade low as the population ages and discouraged job seekers give up looking for work. Federal Reserve research shows retirees are at the forefront of the recent exodus, which blunts the impact of policy aimed at boosting the economy and workforce.
In the two years ended 2013, 80 percent of the decrease in labor force participation was due to retirement, according to calculations by Shigeru Fujita, a senior economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. And while the number of discouraged workers rose sharply during and after the recession, the groups ranks have been roughly unchanged since 2011.
That tilts the debate on whether the participation rate can fully rebound alongside the improving economy, as retired workers are unlikely to re-enter the workforce, said Michelle Girard, chief U.S. economist at RBS Securities Inc., in Stamford, Connecticut. A tighter supply of workers means wage pressures would build faster than otherwise, something Fed Chairman Janet Yellen may watch as a leading indicator of inflation, Girard said.
(Excerpt) Read more at insurancejournal.com ...
I'm assuming that the "participation rate" is the number of people working divided by the number of people who could be working. I am assuming that "could be working" means "are between 18 and 65 years of age." So, increasing numbers of people retiring at 65 should have no effect upon the rate - or should even boost the rate, as retirees leave jobs which then become available to job-seeking youths (who, conversely, are then removed from the ranks of the unemployed).
What is my mistake in thinking here?
“When Robin McLanes generation hit public schools in the 1950s, there were never enough classrooms or teachers to accommodate the bulge,”
I was a new teacher in the mid fifties.
I had 39 students in my first grade class and no aides or assistants in those days.
The article does not really break down who is not working.
From what I have seen, the real losses are among the young AND the over 50’s. Ie, those who can’t get started and those forced into early retirement, often very early retirement.
Being 65 doesn't necessarily mean one should or has to stop workin'.
I’m one of those 55-year-olds who can’t find a job in the current economy, having been out of work for nearly two years. Assuming the Great Recession is coming to an end (and I have yet to be convinced of it), does any of this news mean work opportunities for me?
Baby Boomer are defined by people born between the years 1946 and 1964. Retirement age as defined by the BLS is 65
The leading edge of Baby Boomers just reached retirement age in 2011 (1946 + 65). So, the bulk of Boomers have not reached retirement age yet.
Many have been involuntarily retired (layed off) but the article is making it sound like Baby Boomers are en masse deciding to throw in the towel early. I bet that’s not true.
If the term "participation rate" were to be expanded to include the number of workers divided by the TOTAL NUMBER OF "peeps," then a sudden, large number of babies being born in a particular year (something having no bearing on the availability of jobs, or of labor) would have an enormous impact upon this "rate" - thus making the "rate" useless for economists / labor experts, etc.
The real answer is that the writer of the article used sloppy language and/or logic.
True, but for statistical purposes the working age population uses age 65 as the end of working years. Doesn’t mean many people don’t continue working past that age.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the labor force participation rate is the “share of the population 16 years and older working or seeking work.”
* you have to be actively looking for a job in order to be considered “unemployed”
The rate has increased dramatically over the past 50 years or so due to more women entering the workforce.
Must be a LSM Gerbilist ('tards all).
I did not plan on retiring. The economy did that for me. Nobody is hiring 60+ year old chemists, no matter what kind of experience & references you have. I had intended to work until I could no longer drive.
Lies, damn lies, stast......
Now I'm doin' the skiing in Mont. that the rest of America doesn't want to do.....
Lies, damn lies, statis.....
End result, no more multi-$1k federal income tax to social justice each year. True, I may have cleared a bit more SS each month if I waited, but just saying FUBO, you are getting no more from me was just too tempting. The lack of continued stress was worth it.
Too many years of the federal and quasi-federal program dollar funding chase along with the job insecurity it brings to small company engineering soured me to the point that I was glad to be done with it all.
Now I take great pleasure in (I think) contributing almost nothing to the welfare state. Not even drawing any IRA out until long after the Kenyan is gone. Peripheral taxes are hard to avoid.
I’m one of those who did not have my (government) contract renewed, can’t get work in my field, and have had to “retire” 7 years earlier. Fortunately, Mrs. VanShuyten has a very good job and can work until she wants to leave - no mandatory retirement age for her position, but without her, I would be in a much poorer situation.
If they keep telling us the economy is improving, the media is bound to believe it. Old people are helping to ease the difficulties of job attrition by retiring early. It wouldn’t be a crisis if there were new jobs for younger people, as opposed to the joys of idleness and reflection in the Obamaconomy.
lots of older people are retired because they have a fat pension...not so for a large number of us...luckily, I am still in demand and make good money at 60 and God willing, I’ll keep at it a few more years...