Episode 25: How the Pandemic Has Disrupted Senior Worker Trendlines. Is “Unretire” Back in Vogue?

Mar 11, 2022

For nearly a quarter of a century prior to COVID-19, older workers were staying in the workforce longer and longer. But the pandemic upset those trendlines. We are seeing more and more older workers step out of the workplace today. The real question is whether this is a temporary phenomenon or if we will see a return of the “unretired” worker.

Here are just a handful of the things that we'll discuss:

  1. According to Pew Research, over 50 percent of older workers are now out of the workplace. That is up from 48 percent just prior to the pandemic.
  2. Older workers continued to work through recessions dating back to the 1990s. The pandemic-induced recession in 2020 saw that trend reverse.
  3. The 2008-2009 Great Recession saw personal wealth decline markedly. The economy and capital markets decoupled during 2020-2021. Financial assets and real estate saw record gains, allowing personal wealth to grow correspondingly. Older workers took notice. And took action.


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