Education linked to retirement age, life expectancy

New research released Tuesday by Statistics Canada shows that Canadians are working an average of at least two years longer than we did a decade ago.

While all Canadians are choosing—or feeling compelled—to stay in the workforce longer, education does seem to be a slight factor in how long. The report, Insights on Canadian Society, indicates that in 2009, a 50-year-old with only a high school education could expect to work another 14.3 years, two years longer than would have been the case in 1998. A 50-year-old employee with a post-secondary degree in 2009 was likely to work another 14.6 years, up from 12 years in 1998.

The education factor widens when looking at life expectancy. Those with lower levels of education could expect to live to about age 82.5 in 2009, compared to age 86 for those with post-secondary degrees.