Boomers’ Employment Options Improving
Kim Blanton on Squared Away Blog reports some promising news for boomers in the workforce.
According to a recent study, only 4 percent of people in their early 50s who find a new job are moving into what the researchers label as “old-person jobs” – that is, jobs in occupations that disproportionately employ older workers. The share in these jobs increases sharply, to 13 percent, by the time they reach their late 50s and to 22 percent in their early 60s.
According to researchers Matt Rutledge, Steve Sass, and Jorge Ramos-Mercado of the Center for Retirement Research, which sponsors Squared Away Blog, the situation has improved since the 1990s.
The share of new hires who are in their early 50s and end up in old-person jobs has fallen by more than two-thirds since the late 1990s. For people in their early 60s, it has fallen by nearly one-fifth.
College-educated women between 50 and 64 have made the most progress: 8 percent were in old-person jobs in the early 1990s but only 3 percent are today. One reason could be the particularly large increase in the number of women who’ve received college degrees or professional training, which gives them more of an edge over younger job seekers.
Editor’s note: This is the first time we’ve come across the term “old-person jobs.”
Read the full article: Boomer Employment Options Improving
200% Increase in Bankruptcies for 65+ Americans
Tara Siegel Bernard reports in the New York Times on the huge spike in bankruptcies for Americans over 65.
The consequences of shifts in financial risk from government and employers to the individuals is responsible for the uptick. Since 1991 the increase in bankruptcy filings has increased by 204% for individuals over 65 and 56% for those 55-64 according to a survey by the Consumer Bankruptcy Project.
Contributing factors include Increased costs in medical expenditures, declining incomes, and a decrease in pensions.
While only 10,000 filings have been recorded for the period, there are likely many more in distress.
“The people who show up in bankruptcy are always the tip of the iceberg,” said Robert M. Lawless, a law professor at the University of Illinois and another author of the study.
The article cites other data which also indicate the reasons behind the surge. The median household led by someone 65 or older had liquid savings of $60,600 in 2016, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, whereas the bottom 25 percent of households had saved at most $3,260. Those numbers don’t leave much room for emergencies.
Read the full article: ‘Too Little Too Late’: Bankruptcy Booms Among Older Americans
The Unexpected Face of Poverty
The AARP published an article in The Atlantic with another astounding statistic.
37 million people who are 50 or older don’t have adequate financial resources to meet their most basic needs
A 2016 survey by GOBankingRates, for example, showed that about 3 in 10 adults over the age of 55 had not one penny saved for retirement. For many the only income is Social Security which on average pays $1,369. per month.
And if they are able to work, adults age 50 and older face the longest spells of unemployment and the least likelihood of finding jobs.
Senior poverty manifests itself in many ways: as food insecurity, as unaffordable or inadequate housing, as social isolation and loneliness. It leads to more cases of diabetes, depression, heart disease and other ills. These in turn lead to rising health care costs, which reduce financial resources, perpetuating a vicious cycle and a downward spiral.
We haven’t come to terms with acknowledging that poverty exists for our over 50 populations. The report suggests that this may be the most important step to start solving the situation.
Read the full article: The Unexpected Face of Poverty
Photo by Maryland GovPics on Flickr