G-7: US, Japan, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Canada
Irish Economy 2013: In common with many other countries the only jobs growth
in Ireland in recent times has been in freelance 'jobs.'
"The most recent employment numbers show that 20,000 additional people were at
work in quarter one 2013 compared with the same period last year," said
Michael Noonan, finance minister,
July 4th last. "Looking deeper
into the numbers, the private sector is adding about 2,000 jobs per month."
Richard Bruton, jobs minister,
has also bragged about 2,000 jobs being
created in the private sector every month.
Fodder for the gullible but "looking deeper into the numbers" absent the
prism of ministerial distortion, the Q1 2013
Quarterly National Household Survey [pdf, page 16], shows that the total of
20,500 additional jobs in the 12 months to March 31, 2013, which were part-time
as full-time job numbers fell, is comprised of self employed without employees
at 15,800 and the 'Assisting relative' category of 3,700. So 19,500 of the
20,500 jobs could be termed freelance and working 1 hour for pay a week is
considered employment according to the International Labour Organization
Retired civil servants on nixers are employed!
Finfacts, July 4th report:
Irish Economy 2013: 499,300 on Live Register and in activation schemes in June
Buttonwood, the Economist columnist, in
a blog post this week quotes research from Dhaval Joshi of BCA Research,
that the median hourly earnings for the self-employed in the UK are £5.58, less
than half the £11.21 earned by employees..."Between 2008 and 2012, there was a
431,000 increase in the number of people working on their own, and a 66,000 fall
in the numbers of those self-employed who had staff working for them. As Mr
Joshi remarks: 'Put bluntly, Britain has created an army of underpaid
This shows up in the occupational breakdown of the new freelancers. In the
period March 2011 to March 2013, 64% of the new self-employed were managers or
professionals; a lot of them work in the information and communication trades,
or in admin and support services. There has been a big fall in the proportion of
self-employed in the skilled trades - - the plumbers and carpenters who might be
deemed to be 'natural' freelancers."
BusinessWeek magazine reported last May that there were 22.5m US businesses that didn’t have any paid employees in
2011, 1.7% more than in the year before, about 75% of total
businesses. They reported $990bn in total revenue, up 4.1% from
2010. About 18m non-employer businesses, or about 80% of the
total, reported receipts of less than $50,000. "By non-employer businesses, we’re
talking about a wide-ranging group, from freelance writers and fashion designers
to real estate agents and
taxi drivers who work for themselves - - as well as necessity entrepreneurs who
were pushed into self-employment by a rough job market in recent years."
Those numbers are from the US Census Bureau, which released its annual
report on non-employer businesses
Besides freelancers, there has been a rise in temporary work in recent decades. They are generally young and they were the first to be fired when the Great Recession began in late 2007/early 2008.
Japan and South Korea have the highest rates of temporary staff among members of
the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development with over a third of
workers on contract, compared with the OECD’s average of 25%.
Having fallen in 2008 and 2009, the
share of employees with a contract of limited duration (fixed-term employment)
increased to 13.9 % in the EU-27 in 2010. One in four employees had a
temporary contract in Poland and Spain in 2010 and the share was close to this
level in Portugal. Among the remaining member countries, the share of employees
working on a contract of limited duration ranged from 18.3 % in the Netherlands
down to just 1.1 % in Romania. Eurostat, the EU's statistics office, says that
the considerable range in the propensity to use limited duration contracts
between member countries may, at least to some degree, reflect national
practices, the supply and demand of labour, and the ease with which employers
can hire or fire.
The Irish rate of temp workers is 10%. In Germany,
the rate is 15%.
EU employment statistics and narrative