August 27, 2014

UK self-employment at record high

The number of self-employed workers in the United Kingdom has reached its highest level since these records began 40 years ago.

New data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) revealed that 4.6m British people identified self-employment as their primary means of income this year. This represents 15% of the total UK workforce.

White collar workers represent the largest contributing demographic to self-employment growth over the past five years, with a net increase of 237,000.

This lessens fears that growth in the sector has largely been boosted by “odd-jobbers,” though skilled trade occupations remain the most popular roles for self-employed.

There are many economic reasons for encouraging entrepreneurship and self-employment, despite the associated risks. Alexander S. Kritikos discusses how this mode of employment boosts job opportunities in both the short- and long-term, as well as raising productivity of other firms by increasing competition.

Read more here.

Related articles:
Entrepreneurs and their impact on jobs and economic growth, by Alexander S. Kritikos
How labor market institutions affect job creation and productivity growth, by Magnus Henrekson