Retirement Insights

Pre-Covid Trends in Social Security Claiming

Pre-Covid Trends in Social Security Claiming

Research from the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College

A major question is how COVID-19 has affected the claiming of Social Security benefits. Preliminary reports indicate that some older workers who lost their jobs or were fearful of the virus did turn to Social Security, but an official accounting will not be available for a year

The first section describes the claim-year data published annually by the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) and the birth cohort data used in this analysis. The second section presents claiming ages by cohort. The final section concludes that the share of people claiming Social Security retired-worker benefits when they reach age 62 has been falling since the mid-1990s, with only a brief upward tick during the Great Recession.