Why are so many Americans still working at age 80?
US & Canada

Why are so many Americans still working at age 80?

US President Joe Biden is not the only one in the US working at the age of 80. Many Americans who are in that age, called the “golden years,” work to survive.

In our European cafe you will rarely see a salesman, waiter or bartender aged 65, 70 or 80 years old. But in the United States, the odds are high.

A Washington Post analysis based on data from the National Bureau of Statistics found that 2019 had the highest number of workers over 80. Then the number was 734,000, while in 1980 it was 110,000.

The number of people employed among people over 80 after 2019 fell sharply, a Business Insider analysis found.

In 2021, the share of this population was 5.67 percent, while 10 years ago it was 4.75 percent. In 1980, this percentage was 2.53 percent.

According to data from Boston College, the average age at which men retire is 64, while the average age at which women retire is 62. But the average age at which men and women retire is rising.

Why do they work at the age of 80? The need for income and medical advances have made it possible for people to work well into their ninth decade of life. In the words of analyst Mary Johnson, why stop working if we like it.

“Some of us think we’d be bored without the sense of fulfillment and purpose we had at work,” says Johnson.

The number of poor people in the United States is growing

Long work experience is associated with a lower risk of depression, diabetes and mortality. According to economics professor Courtney Coyle, this population most likely falls into one of two groups – people who really like work or those who simply can’t afford not to work. Many simply cannot retire.

Some have to work because they need money, don’t have enough savings, or have spent their savings. They must continue to work to pay for expensive health care services for close family members, such as a spouse with Alzheimer’s or an adult child with a disability or a sibling with a disability, Johnson said.

The latest data from 2020 shows that the proportion of people under the age of 65 living in poverty has increased.