710,000 people intend to retire in the next five years, with 226,000 in the next two years, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest release Retirement and Retirement Intentions, Australia.

130,000 people retired in 2022, at an average age of 64.8 years. On average, the 4.2 million retirees that currently live in Australia retired at the age of 56.9 years.

Generational research states that the longer we live, the more time we spend in each stage of the human lifecycle. People now take on adult responsibilities of caring for children or paying a mortgage in our 30s.

In 2022-23, the top three reasons retirees ceased their last job were:

• Reached retirement age or eligible for superannuation (31%),

• Own sickness, injury or disability (13%),

• Retrenched, dismissed or no work available (5%).

The number of men who intend to retire from the labour force in the next two years has increased by 16,000 and for an intention to retire in five by 20,000.

However, with women, it is a different story. They plan to retire later in life. Those that intend to retire in two years fell by 12,000 but those with an intention to retire in five years’ time rose by 17,000.

It is now time for the biggest birth cohort, the Baby Boomers (born 1946-63) to retire. The first Baby Boomer turned 65 in 2011, the last Boomer will hit this milestone in 2028. Add about five years to either end to roughly see the window in which Baby Boomers retire.

Aged pension or self-funded?

The Age Pension remains the main source of income for most retirees but less retirees are dependent upon it.

In 2014, only 20% of retirees fully funded their own retirement through super, while by 2023 this number rose to 27%. The rise in self-funded retiree numbers will only increase.

There aren’t Australian retirees yet who paid into their superannuation account throughout their full working life. Only in about a decade, when Gen X (born 1964-81) retires, will retirees have contributed to their super with every pay deposit.

Will this see more Australians retire earlier?