Following on from yesterday’s post on inequality, I discovered this OECD country report on inequality in the UK.
Assortative Mating (see yesterday’s post) has played a more significant role in increasing the earnings gap in the UK, says the report:
Unlike many other countries, the earnings gap between wives of rich and poor husbands has grown strongly: this gap was about GBP 3,900 in 1987, but increased to GBP 10,200 in 2004. [Expressed in 2005 values]
But not as much of a role as self-employment, it seems.
Remember last month, I was less than enthusiastic about the jump in the number of self-employed people. Seems I was right to be worried.
About one-half of the increase in individual earnings inequality is explained by changes in self-employment income as on the whole the self-employed earn less than full-time workers. Their share in total earnings increased by one fifth since the mid-1980s and among the self- employed, the gap between high and low earners has risen.
According to the OECD, its member state with the highest level of non-agricultural self employment is Greece. The lowest is Norway.
As the Americans say, go figure!