More on the “Do It Yourself” Recovery
Erin has already posted a comment on last month’s surge in self employment .
My colleague Sylvain Schetagne extracted some data from the Labour Force micro data file to get a better handle on the change last month – note these are NOT seasonally adjusted data so they should be interpreted with a bit of caution.
The not seasonally adjusted jump in self employment from March to April (not counting unpaid family workers) was 48,358 – of which 38,844 (80%) came in the form of self-employment in non incorporated enterprises with no employees. This category made up half (51%) of self-employment in March, so the increase from March to April was disproportionate.
Some self employed positions – notably those who are incorporated and have employees – offer decent incomes – but research by Leah Vosko and others have shown that those who are employed in unincorporated businesses with no employees generally have extremely low incomes and are extremely insecure. (See Leah Vosko (Ed) Precarious Work. McGill Queen’s University Press, especially Chapter 3.)
In short, not only was there a big jump in self employment, there seems to have been an even bigger jump in the worst form of self employment.