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The Globe and Mail: Patching Earnings Together in the Sharing Economy

by U.S. Financial Diaries

The Toronto-based Globe and Mail featured work from the US Financial Diaries on employment and income volatility in a piece on the economic realities of low-wage workers in the sharing economy. The poor around the world lead very complex financial lives, often balancing multiple sources of income.  As the article notes:

But it’s not just the poor of Asia and Africa – it’s people around you. During the past five years, Dr. Morduch and Rachel Schneider of the Center for Financial Services Innovation have expanded this research into the “low- and moderate-income households” of North America through their U.S. Financial Diaries project – and they have found similar patterns becoming very widespread.
Typical of the hundreds of families they’ve examined are the Hosseins of New York, who make between $1500 and $3000 a month from running a coffee shop and a dry-goods store, from collecting rent on a spare room, from the husband driving a taxi periodically (possibly by way of Uber), and from his part-time income at a cheque-cashing shop. Most months, their income exceeds their family expenses; sometimes it doesn’t, so they both borrow and save.

You can read more about the Hossein family in their Household Profile. The full Globe and Mail article is also available here.