Fedweek

Federal employees are continuing to retire at ever later-stages of their careers, with the average age at standard voluntary federal retirement now 63, a figure that has risen steadily from 61.3 in 1990, according to a Congressional Research Service report.

Counting other types of retirement–early outs, disability and mandatory retirements under special provisions for law enforcement officers, firefighters and air traffic controllers–the average age also has risen by almost two full years over that time, from 59.4 to 61.3.

Retirement data are closely watched in the federal personnel community and on Capitol Hill for signs of a much-predicted “retirement wave” that would erode the institutional knowledge of federal agencies as older employees leave–while on the other hand providing more advancement opportunities for younger employees.

Voluntary retirements under standard rules–what the CRS called “normal” retirements–made up about four-fifths of the total at both the beginning and end points of that period. In between there were times when it fell, as during the mid-1990s when there were widespread early retirement offers as many agencies downsized.

The data, as of fiscal 2016, further showed that for normal retirements, the average years of service was 37.0 for CSRS and 22.2 for FERS, with an average monthly annuity of $4,917 and $1,534, respectively.

See also, Retirement Eligibility & FERS Minimum Retirement Age (MRA) at ask.FEDweek.com

Separately, OPM data show that 90 percent of CSRS-covered employees are continuing to work past their retirement eligibility, as are 12 percent of FERS-covered employees.