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Old Age Security at 67 a ‘timid, belated adjustment’ • Payroll earnings up 0.2 per cent in February: StatsCan • Canadian inflation up 1.9 per cent in March: StatsCan • Fewer Canadians receiving EI benefits in February: StatsCan
|Canadian Payroll Reporter|Last Updated: 06/06/2012

Old Age Security at 67 a ‘timid, belated adjustment’

MONTREAL

— The raising of the age of eligibility for Old Age Security benefits from 65 to 67, as announced in the last federal budget, is an absolute must but this belated adjustment is still timid, according to Yves Guérard, actuary and author of a new publication from the Montreal Economic Institute (MEI).  Since 1951, life expectancy at 65 has increased substantially, from 13 to 18 years for men and from 15 to 22 years for women. Meanwhile, the age of eligibility for pension benefits was reduced from 70 to 65 in the 1960s. The reform proposed in the last budget only partially corrects this anomaly, according to Guérard in A New Paradigm for Retirement. To avoid having a political controversy erupt over this issue with each new generation, a more dynamic approach would be to have the age of eligibility increase automatically as a function of longevity, he said. Data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) show that countries where the employment rate for older workers is high also enjoy a high employment rate for younger workers, and where the one is low, the other is also low. This is at odds with the perception the old are taking jobs away from the young.