We analyse transitions between pensionable jobs, non-pensionable jobs, and other labour market states, using the 1988/9 UK Retirement Survey. We focus on the positive association between length of job tenure and pensionable status, allowing for the possibility that pension scheme members are less mobile than other workers because they have persistent unobserved characteristics that predispose them towards a high degree of security in both employment and retirement. We use a competing risks model with state-specific random effects. The model is estimated by simulated maximum likelihood. Copyright 1996 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.