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Germany - Almost 50% retire early despite planned increased pension age

28 December 2011

674,000 workers retired in 2010, 47.5% of whom did not work until the current pension age of 65 and therefore had to accept a reduction in their pension, according to new analysis by Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper.

In 2005 only 41.2% took early retirement whilst in 2000 it was only 14.5%. This development goes straight against the government's policy of increasing the pension age to 67.

The average new pensioner in 2010 retired three years and two months earlier than 65 and accepted a reduction of -113 Euro per month.

Ulrike Mascher President of social association VDK, believes that the increased pension age of 67 will not make people work longer but will simply increase old age poverty. She told Süddeutsche Zeitung "the situation will get worse when the pension age increases to 67. It is an illusion to believe that people can work until they reach pension age and therefore receive their full pension. Neither the labour market nor the HR policies of employers are geared that way.

Amelie Buntenbach, board member of the German Unions (DGB), added “As long as people can’t even work until the age of 65, the extension of the pension age to 67 is nothing but a pension reduction scheme.”

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