By: Tiffany Hudson
Skyrocketing prices on essentials are forcing some older Americans out of retirement as U.S. inflation continues to hit new highs.
In just the past six months, about 480,000 adults over 55 began looking for a job, according to reporting by the Wall Street Journal. That’s compared to the 180,000 adults looking in the six months prior to the pandemic. This increase is credited in part to the outsized impact inflation is having on the ability of people to retire.
The government’s consumer price index, released Tuesday morning, showed prices shot up 8.5% in March compared to 12 months earlier, according to a report by the Labor Department. This marks the fastest year-over-year inflation rise since December 1981 and surpasses the 7.9% 12-month increase in February, which itself set a 40-year high.
One out of four adults said that inflation is the single greatest threat to their retirement plans in 2022, according to Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis. That’s more than concerns about health care costs, outliving your money or job security combined.
Even before the pandemic, the economic health for some retirees varied. Older workers without a college degree only had about $9,000 in retirement savings on average, compared to the $167,000 for those with a college degree.
In just February, 3% of retirees re-entered the workforce, a trend that is expected to continue for months according to Indeed.