Second Thoughts on Retiring

As a part of their series on retirement issues in the 21st century, USA Today had a not-so-happy piece today about how many of the 1.6 million people becoming eligible for Social Security this year are actually postponing retirement because of health care costs and other economic problems the country is currently facing. Via Kaiser:

In 2007, only 45% of large companies subsidized health insurance for early retirees, compared with 88% in 1991, according to Hewitt Associates. As a result, many employees who retire before age 65, when they become eligible for Medicare, would have to find a new source of health insurance, such as the individual coverage market, Rick McGill, head of retiree medical consulting at Hewitt, said.

A recent AARP piece has a bit more of a positive spin on the trend of delays in retirement. After all, we shouldn’t assume all people will automatically want to retire once they’re eligible for Social Security; many older Americans love their work, and aren’t ready to give it up.