August 06, 2008 (The Editor’s Desk is updated each business day.)

More seniors working full time

Since the mid-1990s there has been a dramatic shift in the part-time versus full-time status of the older workforce.

Workers 65 and over by work schedule, 1977-2007
[Chart data—TXT]

The ratio of part-time to full-time employment among older workers was relatively steady from 1977 to 1990. Between 1990 and 1995, part-time work among older workers began trending upward with a corresponding decline in full-time employment.

But after 1995, that trend began a marked reversal with full-time employment rising sharply. Between 1995 and 2007, the number of older workers on full-time work schedules nearly doubled while the number working part-time rose just 19 percent. As a result, full-timers now account for a majority among older workers: 56 percent in 2007, up from 44 percent in 1995.

These data are from the Current Population Survey program. To learn more, see "Older Workers," BLS Spotlight on Statistics, July 2008. 


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