Number of people working beyond state pension age doubles in 20 years
The number of people working past the state pension age has almost doubled in the past two decades, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.
There are now 1.4 million older people in employment, a rise of 85 per cent from 753,000 in 1993.
The ONS said a number of factors had caused the jump in people working into their 70s, including improved health of this group, financial pressures, longer-life expectancy and wanting to remain active in society.
It may also have been attributed to the phasing out of the default retirement age which began in April 2011. Prior to this, employers could force retirement on employees once they reached the age of 65.
The majority of people working over the state pension age are doing so part-time (66 per cent), as opposed to full-time (34 per cent). It said this was viable as they were 'possibly helped by the financial support of their state pension and other pension arrangements, which allows them to fit their work around other engagements.'
Those working in shorter roles are generally doing so with the same employer, with eight in every ten older employees working with their employer for five years or more.
Around 39 per cent of the 1.4 million older workers are men, compared to 61 per cent of women, although it said that two thirds of those working men were doing so in higher skilled jobs.
Director general of Saga Ros Altmann, said: "Many older people are increasingly choosing to stay at work, often part-time so that they ease more gently into retirement. If they feel fit and healthy and want more money, and are able to work, they are choosing to do so."
According to research from Saga, many over 65s continue to work for other reasons, including underperforming state and private pensions. It said Britain had entered a 'redefined age of retirement'.
Ros Altmann added: "By embracing and in fact welcoming the opportunities of working during part of these bonus years, we can help boost our ailing economy, ensure less reliance on the state and ultimately make retirement more fulfilling."
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