Not only are older American workers (age 50 and over) expecting to work longer, but many now say they expect to never retire, according to the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute. Data suggest the trend may be tied to the recent economic recession.

In 2006, 11.2% of workers age 50 or over expected to retire at age 70, but by 2010 that had increased to 14.8%. Even at higher ages, the expected retirement age has jumped: Just 1.7% of workers age 50 or over planned to retire at age 80 in 2006, while that more than tripled to 5.2% in 2010, EBRI found.

Expected retirement at earlier ages (62 and 65) also steadily declined over the four-year period of 2006-2010, the study found.

“The general trend shows that older Americans are expecting to retire later,” said Sudipto Banerjee, EBRI research associate and author of the study.

In addition, in 2008, during the recession, 22.4% of the workers age 50 or over said they plan to never retire. That declined to 16.3% in 2010. Over the 2006–2010 period, another 14–18% of workers said they don’t know when they will retire.

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