According to a new survey conducted by the Harris Poll on behalf of TD Ameritrade, the majority of Americans — about one in three — plans to work into retirement. About 92 percent of respondents from ages 40 to 49 said they intend to have a job in retirement, compared to about 66 percent of respondents from ages 60 to 69. Roughly half of respondents between the ages of 70 to 79 expect to work about 10 hours per week in retirement.
"Gone are the days of retirement being seen as an essential, defined life stage, where an employee could expect to work for a company long-term and be taken care of after retiring," said Christine Russell, senior manager of retirement and annuities at TD Ameritrade.
Financial needs aren't the only reason that Americans are working longer, according to the study. Other reasons include personal fulfillment, like maintaining a sense of identity, staying mentally young or avoiding depression. Six out of 10 retirees also said they want to build up their savings because they expect to live longer.
According to U.S. Census data, the share of the population 65 and older was 16 percent in 2018, up 3.2 percent from 2017. It's also a staggering 30.2 percent increase since 2010.
As a result, employees age 65 and older currently account for the fastest-growing segment of the American workforce, according to the study.
"As the workplace landscape continues to evolve, Americans are going to need to make an assessment about what their retirement trajectory may actually look like, and plan accordingly," Russell said.
Longer life spans are also shifting Americans' spending habits: 59 percent of so-called "retirees" are reducing overall expenses in order to save more, while 35 percent said they're increasing their income outside of a full-time job. An additional 27 percent expect to get help from a financial advisor on how to plan for retirement.