Baby boomers wait It out

Finances

When it comes to retirement and applying for Social Security benefits, the magic number used to be 62—as in most people applied to begin receiving Social Security at age 62. But that number is changing.

According to research from Boston College's Center for Retirement Research, 56 percent of men used to apply for Social Security at 62. These days only 36 percent of men do. There's been a similar change for women as well—more than two decades ago 63 percent were applying for Social Security at 62; now only 40 percent do. This trend has remained consistent across the baby boomer generation, the oldest of whom are well into their retirement years (age 72 in 2018) and the youngest of whom may have at least a decade and a half of working years ahead of them (turning 54 in 2018).

There are benefits to waiting until your full retirement age (age 65 to 67, depending on when you were born) to retire and/or begin collecting Social Security. For starters, working longer means more money that you can contribute to your retirement accounts.

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