Most countries in the world are in the process of gradually pushing up their retirement age. France’s new President is doing the opposite right now, but that won’t last and the French will soon have to increase retirement age once again. There is no country in the world that is setting retirement age high enough, quickly enough.
Currently, most of us are living one day longer every week we’re alive. Life expectancy is not creeping up – it’s rushing upwards. And, the expectation of how productive people in the upper age ranges will be is also increasing dramatically. Most medical professionals working on longevity realistically predict that the first person to live to 150 years is already alive. More than half of all the people who have ever turned 80 are currently still alive (about 105 million right now, but expected to grow exponentially to as many as a billion people by 2050).
Today, The Economist released this summary of the OECD’s recent report on retirement. This shows the changes in planned and actual (effective) retirement ages, while also showing life expectancy. The comparison between current reality and that of the 1970s shows the extent of problem, as well as the futility of government’s using up political capital to shift retirement by just two or three years. Really, this is a HUGE issue, and there is not one country in the world dealing with this looming crisis adequately:
This is a massive generational issue as well, as the Baby Boomers are trying to keep their plans in tact, but leaving a legacy of disaster for their children and grandchildren who will have to deal with the fallout of an unsustainable policy.