Sticking it out to the very end: Why some are giving up on retirement
Peter M. Fisher, Getty Images
Forget "rethinking retirement," maybe it's should just ditch the idea altogether.
At least that is what some are saying in response to the retirement crisis.
Confidence that retirement is in the foreseeable future has declined among many Americans in recent years, according to a Pew Research Center study from 2012, hence the notion that retirement is in a state of disarray.
“About four-in-ten adults (38 percent) say they are 'not too' or 'not at all' confident that they will have enough income and assets for their retirement,” Pew said on its website last January, also adding that “concerns about retirement financing are now more heavily concentrated among younger and middle-aged adults than among those closer to retirement age.”
But what if skipping retirement altogether was the better option anyway? For example, a new study by the University of Michigan tracked the health effects of retirement, concluding that it can have negative outcomes on mental health.
"Once they retire completely ... there are increases in depression and mental illness," Economist Dhaval Dave told NPR.
But the benefits of avoiding or suspending retirement extend beyond just health, according to NerdWallet’s Anisha Sekar. In an article for Marketwatch, Sekar argues that delaying retirement will “boost your Social Security income by more than 30 percent.”
CNBC’s Rodney Brooks agrees with Sekar that putting off (or avoiding altogether) retirement has its advantages. “Both the Boomers and the Greatest Generation, say they will never retire because they would be bored to death and their brains would just shrivel up,” Brooks wrote on Tuesday in an article that detailed the lives and work habits of a number senior citizens who have lost interest in retirement.
"I really believe that retirement is debilitating, if not physically, certainly emotionally," Arthur E. Imperatore Sr., founder and CEO of New York Waterway, told Brooks.
At a time when roughly one-third of Americans claim to have less than $1,000 in savings toward their retirement, sticking it out to the end may not only be the better option, but the only option.