The Impact of Changing Retirement Behavior on the Declines in Worker Reallocation and Prime-Age Labor Force Participation

by Seth Murray, University of Maryland

Starting in the early 1990’s, the pace of worker reallocation and prime-age men’s labor force participation rate have fallen significantly. These declines are troubling for workers’ retirement security as they result in lower lifetime earnings, and thus negatively effect workers’ Social Security benefits. This dissertation analyzes the impact of older workers’ delaying their retirement from the labor force, which began in the early 1990’s, on the pace of worker reallocation and prime-age workers’ labor force participation decisions. I examine whether older workers’ decisions to delay their retirement result in fewer opportunities for prime-age workers to climb the job ladder, and thus discourage both worker reallocation and labor force participation.

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