To say at this point in the film that the pandemic has paralyzed the world is obvious, reflected in an economic slowdown that has exacerbated the war in Ukraine. However, covid has also accelerated other processes, such as the massive early retirements that are putting the future of a labor-hungry UK at risk.

During and after the health crisis, hundreds of thousands of workers in the last phase of employment decided to leave their jobs ahead of schedule and live on ‘generous’ pensions. Now the UK government is having trouble finding a reason to invite them to leave “the golf courses” (a literal one from the Minister of Finance, Jeremy Hunt, in one of his last speeches) and return to working life.

cover the jobs that stifle economic development it’s one of the biggest headaches in the UK. The government is preparing various measures to encourage early retirees to leave their new lives and get back to the old routine (Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said earlier this year that he wanted to improve the welfare system to get people back to work ). aware that the task is complicated.

In general, new retirees don’t have a mortgage behind them or financial worries that make them reconsider going back to work. Nearly 90% of people aged 55 to 59 who take early retirement are either unemployed or not dependent on state benefits, according to a survey by the Office for National Statistics. To mean, double-digit inflation is not drowning them.

The issue is complicated when wealth is not the only deciding factor for early retirement. The ‘rich’ aren’t the only ones leaving the workforce early In the United Kingdom. Those living on modest pensions are also forced to leave their jobs, especially for health reasons that make it impossible to continue developing employment. An investigation by the British Trades Union Congress (TUC) suggests that, for lower-earning citizens aged 50-64, poor health is the reason for early retirement. Since 2019, the number of people using this reason for inactivity has increased by 390,000, mostly in the 50-64 age group.

The exodus of older workers is unmatched in other advanced economies

The shrinking workforce not only reduces the country’s economic capacity, but heightens the tension between demands for wage increases and inflation at a time when growth in Britain is also being held back by the disruption of trade and related investment. to Brexit.

Britain is the only one of the world’s seven largest advanced economies not to have returned to pre-pandemic levels, and some economists see a link between falling GDP and labor shortages.

Since the last quarter of 2019, Britain has lost 408,000 people aged between 16 and 64 from the workforce, according to Office for National Statistics data collected by Reuters. From them, 313,000 were over 50. Even as the cost of living has risen, workers aged 50-64 have only increased by 68,000 since their mid-2022 low.

The exodus of older workers is unmatched in other advanced economies. According to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), it is where the employment rate of workers between 55 and 64 years of age fell the most. And the forecasts are not rosy: the Bank of England predicted last month that Britain’s workforce participation rate would remain below its pre-Covid level.

Entrepreneurs and researchers believe that one way out is to encourage youth employment. But the alternative is not unique. Seniors who want to continue working must be an active part of the solution, but in many cases, the ‘aging’ leaves them out of the labor market.