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News and views from the German-language region of Europe

May 8, 2009

German & UCG demographics

Filed under CoG Potpourri

Last Sunday’s GCE presentations on the age of UCG elders and the demographics of UCG again reminded me of the similarity between UCG and German demographics.

Don’t be intimidated by the German on this webpage – you will only be looking at a graph and a chart. The webpage shows Germany’s demographics based on official statistics for the 82.4 million living in Germany at the end of 2005.

The graph at the top of the page shows the number (in millions) of people in each age group, ages 0-9, 10-19, etc. and the percentage of male and female for each group. As you can see, the age bracket 40-49 is the largest group, comprising 16.4% of Germany’s total population. (If the numbers for UCG’s eldership are representative of UCG as a whole in the USA, then UCG’s largest age bracket in the USA would be a higher age bracket than ages 40-49.)

If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, there are 2 charts. The first of these two charts shows the percentage breakdown for each age bracket relative to the total population. Using this chart and U.S. Feast registration figures as a comparison, here is how Germany’s and UCG’s demographics in the USA compare (Germany’s percentages are in square brackets after UCG’s percentages):

Under age 30: 4699 people 35.5% [31.8%]
Ages 30 to 60: 4878 people 36.8% [43.3%]
Over age 60: 3663 people 27.7% [24.9%]

UCG has 64.5% over age 30, and Germany has 68.2% over age 30. However, UCG has nearly 3% more in the over age 60 group.

To project population trends, demographic experts use birth rates and actuarial statistics.

As part of UCG’s strategic plan, one strategy is to increase the number of youth retained. To measure this, we first have to determine what the current retention rate is, and that is being determined. I would venture that this retention rate is a vital "actuarial" statistic for considering the implications of our current demographic situation in UCG.

By the way, Germany has a very unhealthy demographic. Its demographic pyramid is slowly becoming inverted (upper age brackets larger than lower age brackets). As a result, Germany’s population is projected to decline by some 10-15 million by the year 2050, unless new policies are enacted to allow increased immigration to offset the projected decline in population. The projected decline in Germany’s population has serious implications for funding federal retirement and health insurance programs to provide benefits for those in the upper age brackets.

Paul Kieffer's blog with personal insights and news from the German-language region in Europe.


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