Here’s something that will surprise no one but Washington, D.C. bureaucrats – the vast majority of older Americans claim their Social Security benefits long before they reach age 70, incurring a penalty of more than 30 percent .
Roughly three-quarters of Americans claim benefits prior to age 70 because they are not working, need the money, fear Social Security will be cut and suffer from poor health.
About 22 percent of older Americans have a gap of two or more years between retirement and claiming their Social Security Benefits. They rely upon employer-sponsored pensions and other savings to finance the delay.
These were the findings of a nationally representative survey on individuals’ claiming choices called Social Security Claiming Decisions: Survey Evidence. The survey was conducted by economists John B. Shoven of Stanford University, Sita Nataraj Slavov of George Mason University, and David A. Wise of the National Bureau of Economic Research.