Why No One Can Seem to Agree On What the Gig Economy Actually Is 

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From Money, Bob Sullivan discusses the range of the type of gig workers and why there are differences of opinion on what the gig economy is.  He discusses a survey by McKinsey & Company that tries to identify the category of gig workers.  Bob writes:

McKinsey set out to learn more about this broader set of gig workers. It found there are 54-68 million independent earners in the United States. Many are not what or whom you’d expect.

  • By choice, mostly – 72% are independent because they want to be; the other 28% are forced into gig work.
  • Casual earners are the largest group – 40% of gig workers are moonlighting because they like the extra cash; 14% are moonlighting because they have to, and another 14% are gig workers because they can’t get a full-time job.
  • Not all millennials – Young adults represent less than one-quarter of the independent workforce.
  • Many are older – Seniors are Airbnb’s fastest-growing host demographic, and a quarter of Uber’s drivers are over age 50.
  • Many are caregivers – Those who stay at home with children, the elderly, or the infirm are in a good position to pick up occasional piece work.
  • Etsy and Uber, part-time – Some 70% of Etsy sellers and 60% of Uber drivers in the United States have some other form of primary income.
  • It’s not all Uber and Etsy – While Uber grabs the headlines, independent work “is also preferred by many professionals such as doctors, therapists, lawyers, accountants, interior designers, and writers,” McKinsey said.
  • They are urbanites – Eighty-one percent of the growth in gig jobs over the past four years took place in the nation’s 25 largest metro areas.

Read the full story Why No One Can Seem to Agree On What the Gig Economy Actually Is | MONEY

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