Spotlight on Statistics

July 2008

Older workers

Chart Data

Percent increase in employment by age and sex, 1977-2007
Age and sex Percent Change

Age 16 and over

59

Age 65 and over

101

Men, Age 65 and over

78

Women, Age 65 and over

147

Age 65-69

85

Age 70-74

98

Age 75 and over

172

Labor force participation rate of workers 65 and over, 1948-2007
Year Total, 65 and older Men, 65 and older Women, 65 and older

1948

27.0 46.8 9.1

1949

27.3 47.0 9.6

1950

26.7 45.8 9.7

1951

25.8 44.9 8.9

1952

24.8 42.6 9.1

1953

24.8 41.6 10.0

1954

23.9 40.5 9.3

1955

24.1 39.6 10.6

1956

24.3 40.0 10.8

1957

22.9 37.5 10.5

1958

21.8 35.6 10.3

1959

21.1 34.2 10.2

1960

20.8 33.1 10.8

1961

20.1 31.7 10.7

1962

19.1 30.3 10.0

1963

17.9 28.4 9.6

1964

18.0 28.0 10.1

1965

17.8 27.9 10.0

1966

17.2 27.1 9.6

1967

17.2 27.1 9.6

1968

17.2 27.3 9.6

1969

17.3 27.2 9.9

1970

17.0 26.8 9.7

1971

16.2 25.5 9.5

1972

15.6 24.3 9.3

1973

14.6 22.7 8.9

1974

14.0 22.4 8.1

1975

13.7 21.6 8.2

1976

13.1 20.2 8.2

1977

13.0 20.0 8.1

1978

13.3 20.4 8.3

1979

13.1 19.9 8.3

1980

12.5 19.0 8.1

1981

12.2 18.4 8.0

1982

11.9 17.8 7.9

1983

11.7 17.4 7.8

1984

11.1 16.3 7.5

1985

10.8 15.8 7.3

1986

10.9 16.0 7.4

1987

11.1 16.3 7.4

1988

11.5 16.5 7.9

1989

11.8 16.6 8.4

1990

11.8 16.3 8.6

1991

11.5 15.7 8.5

1992

11.5 16.1 8.3

1993

11.2 15.6 8.1

1994

12.4 16.8 9.2

1995

12.1 16.8 8.8

1996

12.1 16.9 8.6

1997

12.2 17.1 8.6

1998

11.9 16.5 8.6

1999

12.3 16.9 8.9

2000

12.9 17.7 9.4

2001

13.0 17.7 9.6

2002

13.2 17.9 9.8

2003

14.0 18.6 10.6

2004

14.4 19.0 11.1

2005

15.1 19.8 11.5

2006

15.4 20.3 11.7

2007

16.0 20.5 12.6

Workers 65 and over by work schedule, 1977-2007
Year Employed, 65 and over, percent distribution
Usually work full-time Usually work part-time

1977

48.7 51.3

1978

48.1 51.9

1979

49.2 50.8

1980

49.0 51.0

1981

48.9 51.1

1982

48.4 51.6

1983

48.7 51.3

1984

49.3 50.7

1985

48.5 51.5

1986

47.7 52.3

1987

48.6 51.3

1988

49.3 50.8

1989

48.9 51.1

1990

48.5 51.5

1991

47.4 52.6

1992

47.9 52.1

1993

47.4 52.5

1994

45.4 54.6

1995

43.7 56.3

1996

45.6 54.4

1997

47.0 53.0

1998

46.0 54.0

1999

46.3 53.7

2000

48.8 51.2

2001

49.9 50.1

2002

52.2 47.8

2003

53.5 46.5

2004

53.3 46.7

2005

54.0 46.0

2006

55.6 44.4

2007

56.3 43.7

Percentage distribution of employed women age 65 and over by marital status, 1977 and 2007
Year Married Never married Widowed, divorced, or separated

1977

33 11 56

2007

47 6 48

Employment distribution by age and education, 1997 and 2007
Age 65 and over Age 25-64
1997 2007 1997 2007

Bachelor's degree or higher

25.1% 31.0% 29.5% 34.4%

Some college or associate degree

21.0% 22.1% 27.7% 27.7%

High school graduates, no college

32.6% 34.0% 32.7% 29.0%

Less than a high school diploma

21.3% 12.8% 10.1% 9.0%

Median weekly earnings of full-time workers by age and sex, 1979 and 2007
Age and sex 1979 2007

Total, 16 and over

$240 $695

Men, 16 and over

$291 $766

Women, 16 and over

$182 $614

Total, 65 and over

$198 $605

Men, 65 and over

$219 $686

Women, 65 and over

$170 $534

December-to-December annual increases in the experimental consumer price index for the elderly and the consumer price index for all urban consumers, 1983-2007

Year

Annual percent change
CPI-Elderly CPI-All urban

1983

3.7 3.8

1984

4.1 3.9

1985

4.1 3.8

1986

1.8 1.1

1987

4.5 4.4

1988

4.5 4.4

1989

5.2 4.6

1990

6.6 6.1

1991

3.4 3.1

1992

3.0 2.9

1993

3.1 2.7

1994

2.7 2.7

1995

2.8 2.5

1996

3.4 3.3

1997

1.8 1.7

1998

1.9 1.6

1999

2.8 2.7

2000

3.6 3.4

2001

1.9 1.6

2002

2.6 2.4

2003

2.1 1.9

2004

3.4 3.3

2005

3.6 3.4

2006

2.7 2.5

2007

4.0 4.1

Participation in defined contribution and defined benefit retirement plans, all private industry, 1992-93, 1996-97, 2000, and 2007
Year Percent participating
Defined contribution Defined benefit

1992-93

35 32

1996-97

40 27

2000

36 19

2007

43 20

Projected percentage change in labor force by age, 2006-2016
Age Precent change 2006-16

Total, 16 years and older

8.5

75 and older

84.3

65 to 74

83.4

55 to 64

36.5

25 to 54

2.4

16 to 24

-6.9

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