Baby boomers: towards the end of an era

Population and Societies

431, February 2007

In industrialized countries, the demography of the last sixty years has been shaped by the baby boom generations, while the next half-century will be marked by their retirement and death. Will it become easier for young people to find jobs? Will the needs of dependent old people place new pressure on resources? By comparing different European countries, Alain Monnier shows that much depends on the scale of the baby boom in each country.

In Europe, the next fifty years will be marked by the retirement and death of the baby boom generations. But the socioeconomic implications are not necessarily what one might expect. Though the people reaching retirement age will gradually outnumber young people entering the labour market, unemployment will not automatically be reduced. There is no guarantee that all persons who retire will be replaced or that the employment opportunities match the profiles of job seekers.
Likewise, residential care capacity for old people will not inevitably be insufficient. Though more numerous, old people are in better health and can delay their entry into a retirement home.
On the other hand, the 20% to 40% increase in the number of deaths will certainly have major consequences for health systems. In parallel, the funerary services sector will experience rapid growth.

Receive the e-alert

Same author

On the same topic