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Analysis and Comment (16)

He’s only 28 years old, but Eamon Sullivan has hung up his goggles. He’s only 28 years old, but Eamon Sullivan has hung up his goggles. EPA/Julian Abram Wainwright

How athletes such as Eamon Sullivan cope with retirement

As the Commonwealth Games enters its last days, Australian sprinter John Steffenson announced he’s hanging up the spikes after the tournament is over, and diver Matthew Mitcham hinted at retiring too…
They want us to retire at what age? They want us to retire at what age? Aletia/Shutterstock

75 is the new 65, so we should all keep working for longer

The idea of raising the retirement age is not popular – most people resent being told they must work for longer. But with life expectancies increasing and people enjoying higher quality of life at older…
Many people prefer casual work and a phased approach to retirement. Many people prefer casual work and a phased approach to retirement. Shutterstock

If we are to work to 70, we need to rethink work

The norm of permanent full-time terms of employment is under serious challenge. In Australia today more than one-third of employed people work on more variable terms – in particular as casuals (19%), independent…
It’s unrealistic and unfair to expect everyone to have the same retirement age. It’s unrealistic and unfair to expect everyone to have the same retirement age. Shutterstock

The pension age is rising to 70: a case of one size fits some

Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey has confirmed the pension age will rise to 70 by 2035, meaning all Australians currently aged under 50 will be affected. It follows a recommendation from the Commission…
Treasurer Joe Hockey has his sights set on the age pension. Treasurer Joe Hockey has his sights set on the age pension. Daniel Munoz/AAP

Pension reform and the ‘budget crisis’: a less than mature debate

Treasurer Joe Hockey last night stepped up his rhetoric on the the need for heavy government spending cuts, singling out the A$40 billion age pension cost as “much more than we spend on defence, or hospitals…
Older workers are already working longer; but the debate around paying for the Age Pension has only just begun. Older workers are already working longer; but the debate around paying for the Age Pension has only just begun. Eric Yen/Flickr

Age Pension debate makes clear: adequate super is pivotal

Talk about increasing the Age Pension eligibility age to 70 has generated a lot of anxiety and indignation. What seems to be going unnoticed in all the hype is that we have just experienced a round of…
Having enough money for retirement will take more super contributions than most Australians are making. Having enough money for retirement will take more super contributions than most Australians are making. Shutterstock

Why Australians don’t make extra super contributions

Australians are increasingly relying on superannuation for their retirement income, but despite more than 20 years of compulsory super, many people are not retiring with enough. The assets under management…
Retirement incomes will leave many short, especially single people. Retirement incomes will leave many short, especially single people. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

The majority of Australians are not saving enough for retirement

Only 53% of couples and 22% of single people are on track to achieve a comfortable level of retirement income, according to an in-depth study of the adequacy of retirement savings. The outcome of a collaboration…
Redundancies at Holden highlight the fact that around three quarters of those retiring early do so involuntarily. Redundancies at Holden highlight the fact that around three quarters of those retiring early do so involuntarily. Julian Smith/AAP

Holden, retirement ages and the myth of choice

Holden’s move to withdraw from Australian manufacturing draws attention to the significant problem of involuntary retirement in Australia. While the official retirement age is 65 years, there are many…
Dealing with an ageing population and workforce has been a concern for some years, with Tony Abbott promising changes to make it easier for older workers to find employment. Dealing with an ageing population and workforce has been a concern for some years, with Tony Abbott promising changes to make it easier for older workers to find employment. AAP/Paul Miller

Australia is ageing, but is lifting the retirement age inevitable?

The Federal Government only took a few hours to quash suggestions made by the Productivity Commission on Friday to lift the retirement age. But while the Commission’s report is based on research that’s…
It’s time for the government to rethink its stance on superannuation guarantee contributions. It’s time for the government to rethink its stance on superannuation guarantee contributions. AAP

Increasing the super contribution rate is a second-rate solution

Australia’s approach to retirement incomes policy has three pillars. The first pillar is the means-tested age pension, which dates from 1909, and is intended to provide a safety net should the other pillars…
A quarter of retirees are using their superannuation lump sum to pay off debt: is this poor planning or the result of tax incentives? A quarter of retirees are using their superannuation lump sum to pay off debt: is this poor planning or the result of tax incentives?

For retirees, nothing is certain but debt and taxes

Will extra debt neutralise increases in the superannuation contribution rate? Studies of retirees’ financial positions show that many people accumulate debt faster than they add to their super. Once they…
Many older people already want to work longer but encounter barriers to doing so. Many older people already want to work longer but encounter barriers to doing so. Image from www.shutterstock.com

It’s time to redefine the traditional working age

Welcome to Shades of Grey, a series from The Conversation that examines the challenges posed by Australia’s ageing workforce. Today, Rafal Chomik, a Senior Research Fellow at UNSW’s ARC Centre of Excellence…
There’s little proof that the transition to retirement has a significant impact on mental health. There’s little proof that the transition to retirement has a significant impact on mental health. petruzzophoto

Retirement: a trigger for distress or welcome relief from the rat race?

Welcome to Shades of Grey, a series from The Conversation that examines the challenges posed by Australia’s ageing workforce. Today, Australian National University’s Sarah Olesen and Peter Butterworth…
Maintaining workforce participation in older workers has some benefits, but current labour trends are “age unfriendly”. Maintaining workforce participation in older workers has some benefits, but current labour trends are “age unfriendly”. Image from www.shutterstock.com

There’s no silver bullet solution to Australia’s ageing workforce

Welcome to Shades of Grey, a series from The Conversation that examines the challenges posed by Australia’s ageing workforce, Today, Monash University’s Veronica Sheen looks at the sustainability of older…
An emphasis on longer working lives should be a policy aspiration, rather than an ideological straitjacket. An emphasis on longer working lives should be a policy aspiration, rather than an ideological straitjacket. Image from www.shutterstock.com

Active ageing is a risky labour market policy

Welcome to Shades of Grey, a series from The Conversation that examines the challenges posed by Australia’s ageing workforce. Today, Monash University’s Philip Taylor looks at the costs and benefits of…

Research and News (1)

Research Briefs (4)

Retirement can be bad for your health

Retirement can be detrimental to both mental and physical health, according to researchers at the Institute of Economic Affairs…