Anger is building in France about the government’s plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62. As I understand it, this is the age at which all French workers are entitled to receive their government pension. The system itself is struggling financially.
Not a bad deal for what we in the U.S. would call an early retirement.
I found some other interesting statistics about the average age at which men stop working in various countries:
- UK : 63.6
- Sweden : 63.3
- Spain : 61.6
- Italy : 60.6
- Germany : 60.5
- France : 59.2
- Netherlands : 58.8
- Belgium : 57.6
- USA : 63.6
- Japan : 66.5
Also, only 15% of French adults between age 60 and 65 are still working, the lowest percentage in Europe. (Source)
Anyway, the news about the French protests caused Jack Cafferty to pose the “What’s the right age to retire?” question on his CNN blog. The comments are all over the map. Many answers are from those who enjoy their work and basically plan on dropping dead on the job.
I hear that a lot. I don’t get it. Even if you enjoy your work, aren’t you a little bit interested in trying something new before you check out?
When I read about 90 year old lawyers, for example, I wonder: After that many years in practice, haven’t you about seen everything, at least twice? Are you not bored yet?
The answer to the question “what is the right age to retire” is a very personal one, unique to your own circumstances. To me, the key is that the decision be yours and not forced by external circumstances. Ideally, health shouldn’t force you off the job and financial need shouldn’t keep you there.
That’s what I’m striving for. What about you?
Here is the link to the Cafferty post and the comments: Whats the right age to retire?