There has been a record increase in the number of people aged over 65 employed in the UK, with an extra 173,000 joining the workforce between April and June this year, bringing the total to 1.468 million.
The ONS said the increase was driven by rises in part-time work, as the average number of hours worked fell.
Commenting on the increase, Becky O’Connor, Head of Pensions and Savings, interactive investor, said: “The record rise in employment among over 65s shows that reality is biting for people who might prefer to be retired, but can’t afford to give up work.
“During the pandemic, when savings were high and people were forced to stay at home, we saw many people bring forward decisions to give up work, because retiring early felt achievable.
“But now that inflation is rampant and stock market returns are volatile, the tables have turned, the retirement numbers don’t quite add up and older people are taking a practical approach and returning to work in their droves.
“This might feel like the end of retirement dreams, but hopefully, for those that do still want to stop work altogether one day, it’s a temporary halt to plans, while times are tough.
“There are advantages to continuing to work beyond improved income for those who are healthy enough to do so. For many, continuing to work is a preference as well as necessary for financial reasons. The hope is that there are enough appropriate job opportunities for the older generation, who are also more likely to have caring responsibilities to juggle.
“The latest ONS data suggests that many are finding part time work opportunities to suit or earning self-employed income. Over the years, it’s likely that more people will either have to or choose to try and find a balance between working and retiring and ‘flexi-retirements’ become the norm.”