Massive surge in over-65 workers – ONS

There are now almost 100,000 more people working past the age of 65 than a year ago following a spring surge in older worker numbers, according to ONS Labour Market Statistics released this week.

The ONS figures show the pace of increase in the number of people working past state retirement age is accelerating. It took more than 10 years for the number of people working past age 65 to double from 500,000 to a million, a milestone reached in spring 2013, yet at the current rate of increase the figure of two million will be reached within six years. One in 10 over-65s is now working, according to the ONS figures.

ONS data shows 95,000 more over-65s in work for the period February to April 2014 compared to a year earlier. The spring 2014 quarter experienced a significant increase in over-65s, with 58,000 older workers joining the workforce in that three-month period.

Just Retirement director Steve Lowe says: “The combination of longer retirements and inadequate pensions is forcing many to continue working past state pension age. Auto-enrolment should encourage higher levels of pension saving over the very long-term but in the meantime we have a generation of retiring workers that needs all the help they can get to make the most of the money they have saved, particularly in light of the changes to pensions in the Budget that will give people more freedom to take money.

“Our research into benefits take-up found that many older home owners – perhaps as many as half – aren’t claiming any or all of the State benefits they are entitled to, and are missing out on £687 a year on average and in the worst case £3,244 a year.”