It’s not good news for workers in America. New research shows that U.S. life expectancy is now decreasing rather than increasing. To make matters worse, a recent data release on the U.S. labor force indicates that American workers are working longer than ever and experiencing less healthy and shorter retirements.
Bloomberg lists some of the most important statistics on this incredible reversal. America’s age-adjusted mortality rate – the number of deaths per year – grew by approximately 1.2 percent between 2014 and 2015. This rise, calculated from data compiled by the Society of Actuaries, is the first year-over-year increase in the U.S. mortality rate since 2015.
As U.S. life expectancy falls, workers are spending more years at work, waiting longer to retire and being in worse health when they do choose to stop working. According to Bloomberg, nearly one in three Americans between the age of 65 and 69 are still working. By 2027, workers will only be able to claim their full Social Security benefits if they retire at the age of 67 (compared to 65 in 2002).
A recent study from the University of Michigan has also shown how our years in the workforce are wreaking havoc with our health. The authors of the study, HwaJung Choi and Robert Schoeni surveyed a broad spectrum of the middle-aged workforce, discovering a broad decline in cognitive skills and a spike in substance abuse and suicide amongst workers in the 65-year to 70-year age bracket.
The current life expectancy for men and women in America is 85.6 and 87.6 years respectively.