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January 12, 2024 | Death by Taxation for Gig Economy

Martin Armstrong

Martin Arthur Armstrong is current chairman and founder of Armstrong Economics. He is best known for his economic predictions based on the Economic Confidence Model, which he developed.

Gig economy

The gig economy has exploded in recent years as people seek additional income to keep up with the rising living costs. The government has been attempting to exploit these workers for additional taxes for years. A new law implemented by the Biden Administration will force some businesses to classify gig workers as employees, raising costs for everyone involved.

According to a paper published by the University of Chicago, during the first year of the pandemic, there were 2.1 million new gig workers, and in 2021, an additional 3.1 million people took on gig work.  Upwork found that 36% of the American workforce has been freelancing during the pandemic, which is an increase of 2 million over 2019. Nearly 2 million Americans drive for one of more rideshare services, such as Uber and Lyft. Reuters now estimates the number of gig workers in America to be closer to 3.4 million.

WEF Amozon Delivery

It costs companies about 30% more to hire someone as an employee rather than an independent contractor. There are state laws regarding independent contract or gig work, but this is the largest piece of legislation to be passed on the federal level.

The legislation is presented in a way that will protect workers from the big bad companies. In truth, the law will raise taxes on these workers who took on these low-skilled positions for extra income. This will prevent some from, say, working for both Lyft and Uber. Trade group Chamber of Progress believes that reclassification will result in $31 billion in lost revenue.

Minimum Wage.meme_

Companies will simply limit their workforce by necessity. When Governor Gavin Newsom approved raising California’s minimum wage to $20 under Bill 1228, countless people found themselves without a job. Pizza Hut fired over 2,000 delivery drivers right before the change was implemented. California Pizza Hut and PacPizza franchises eliminated delivery driver positions entirely.

So, the kid delivering pizzas a few nights a week during college will miss out on that opportunity because the government wants to tax him as an employee. “Gig” is simply a temporary contract intended to produce supplemental income. These positions were never meant to be full-time career paths. The government should explore why so many people are seeking multiple jobs instead of preventing people from seeking out additional sources of revenue.

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January 12th, 2024

Posted In: Armstrong Economics

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