As the economy continues to slowly improve, more seniors are feeling optimistic about their retirement future.

A nationwide study from CareerBuilder.com finds that although many seniors say they cannot afford to retire, the percentage of seniors opting to postpone their retirement plans has dropped from 2013.

Fifty-eight percent of workers ages 60 and older say they will delay their retirement, a drop from 61% the same time last year. The survey was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder among 433 full-time workers ages 60 and up and 2,201 hiring and human resources managers.

But not everyone is feeling optimistic, 10% of respondents report they will never be able to retire, holding steady from 2013’s 11%. Half of the respondents say they will be able to retire within four years, up from 47% last year.

But retirement doesn’t necessarily mean the end of one’s work life altogether, the survey finds, as 45% saying they will take on either full-time or part-time work post-retirement. This is a drop of 15% from last year’s 60%.

Michael Erwin, senior career advisor at CareerBuilder, says the drop in those looking for work post-retirement can be attributed to the Affordable Care Act.

“The number one concern for aging workers is always finances, and number two is always health care,” Erwin says. “The ACA could have definitely had a major role in this. They are also feeling more comfortable with their money and won’t have to go out and look for another job after retiring.”

Erwin predicts that the number of retirees seeking work in their golden years will continue to decrease.

“Not all workers approaching retirement age feel they can retire, but we are moving in that direction, and the numbers are getting higher,” he says. “We will see this as the economy continues to improve and the stock market stays strong. People feel more confident not only saying, ‘I will retire,’ but also telling their employer that they will definitely leave on this date.”

One interesting finding in the report, Erwin says, is that more men are feeling confident about retiring compared to the women surveyed. Seventy-one percent of women said they would be more likely to delay retirement, compared to 49% of men. What’s more, 18% of women ages 60 and older say they will not likely ever be able to retire, compared to just 7% of men.

“Maybe women are being more objective about needing a certain amount of money to retire, compared to men just keeping their eye on the [retirement] prize,” he says.

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