Practice What You Preach? Germany Set to Lower Retirement Age
While presidents and prime ministers across Europe are cajoling parliaments and persuading voters to approve retirement age hikes and benefit cuts for retirees, Germany is taking a step in the opposite direction. As part of a deal to cement her party’s coalition with the center-left Social Democrats, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s new program includes a provision to lower the retirement age for some workers and contribute more money to retiree pensions. The measure is popular with voters and the country has enough money to make it feasible, at least in the short-term, but it sends mixed messages to its European neighbors, who have long been lectured on the need to cut back on retirement programs.