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More older women say Bah! to retirement | NBC News

Rising longevity and the aging baby boom partially explain the trend. Almost 75 percent of 55- to 64-year-olds will be working in 2018, compared with 65 percent in 2008, forecasts Northeastern University economist Barry Bluestone. Likewise, he thinks 30 percent of Americans age 65 to 74 will be working at that point, up from 25 percent in 2008.

Some researchers believe something else is at play. Elizabeth Fideler, a research fellow at the Sloan Center on Aging & Work at Boston College and the author of "Women Still at Work: Professionals Over Sixty and On the Job," has studied the cohort, and she believes they are making up for slow career starts.