February 1999

IZA DP No. 32: Work or Retirement? Exit Routes for Norwegian Elderly

published in: Applied Economics, 2000, 32(14), 1865-1876

In this paper we analyze early retirement pathways for Norwegian male and female workers. We apply a multinomial logit model to a data set covering more than 10 500 employees, ages 56-61, in 1989. The aim is to analyze the transition to different destinations, i.e. disability pension, unemployment benefits, out of the labour force, in the period from 1989 till 1995. Both family characteristics, expected income in different end-states, and push factors, such as industry attachment and local unemployment, are important for the early retirement process. Our findings also indicate that there are several gender differences. The explanatory variables have different effects on the different exit routes for males as well as for females. We therefore reject the hypothesis that disability and unemployment are exchangeable pathways into early retirement.