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The pandemic triggered an exodus from the workplace, as many older workers lost their jobs because of the economic downturn or chose to retire. As the pandemic winds down, however, many of them are returning to work.

Although the number of retired Americans 65 and older is nearly 3 percent higher than in 2020, the number of working older adults is more than 2 percent points higher, reflecting the broader economic recovery and strong labor market conditions. Several trends may help explain the reversal: 

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