Compared With Other Countries, French Retire Early In Large Numbers


Recent protests in France over raising the minimum age at which an individual can receive reduced retirement benefits from 60 to 62 and full benefits from 65 to 67 have brought to light a difference in French retirement patterns as compared those of other countries, according to an article by the New York Times. Although the proposed retirement policy in France is almost identical to current policy in the U.S.--where the minimum age at which an individual can receive partial Social Security benefits is 62, and total benefits 66, and scheduled to rise to 67--France "stands out...in how many people do retire when they are still relatively young."

Research conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) revealed that in 2009 only one in five Frenchmen aged 60-64 was in the work force (either holding a job or looking for one). Comparisons of France with some countries produces alarming differences. A Korean man over 75 years of age, for example, "is more likely to be working than a Frenchman in his early 60s."

The issue of retirement benefits and when an individual should be eligible to receive them is of particular concern to many European governments seeking to reduce their country's debt.
SSDAN Office

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