Retirement Shock Already Here

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    The baby boom retirement shock is already here, says a Royal Bank report on trends in Canada’s labour force. It says the steady decline in the participation rate continues even as the unemployment rate drops. The participation rate, a number that tracks Canadians with jobs and those looking for jobs as a percentage of the working-age population, dipped to 66.1 per cent in the latest employment data for April, down from 66.5 per cent from a year ago and from 67.8 in February 2008. The working age population is considered anyone over age 15, with no upper limit. And the trend is likely to become more noticeable going forward, it says. Data from October 2008 to April 2014 on those Canadians who tell Statistics Canada each month that they are not in the workforce voluntarily has risen by more than a million with 682,000 in the 65 years and older cohort. The most likely explanation is that many Canadians are dropping out of the workforce because they are retiring.