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Today, the JPMorgan Chase Institute produced new research exploring the relationship between participation on the platform economy and involuntary job loss, as indicated by the arrival of unemployment benefits. While fewer than one percent of Americans experiencing job loss participate in the Online Platform Economy, the data show participation on transportation apps increases 72 percent around the receipt of unemployment benefits. Participation in selling platforms similarly increases 27 percent following involuntary job loss.
“Understanding how families use the Online Platform Economy to smooth their income in the face of major cash flow events is critical to understanding the role of these platforms in our economy,” said Diana Farrell, President and CEO of the JPMorgan Chase Institute. “The $150-$250 that these families earn on platforms following job loss is being used as a crucial shock absorber for financial volatility.”
The report builds on previous research from the JPMorgan Chase Institute on the Online Platform Economy, exploring where Americans are earning income and how earnings from platforms figure into family income. The new report, “Bridging the Gap: How Families Use the Online Platform Economy to Manage their Cash Flow” finds that:
The research leverages the JPMorgan Chase Institute Online Platform Economy Dataset, based on 38 million payments directed through 128 different online platforms to 2.3 million distinct account holders, out of a sample of 39 million, between October 2012 and March 2018. The new report tracks how Online Platform Economy participation rates and average weekly platform revenues evolve cash flow events. In total the report tracks five specific events in 2016 and 2017: a family receiving its first direct deposit from a platform company indicating entry into the Online Platform Economy, job loss, job gain, receipt of a tax refund, and tax payment.
To identify trends and differentiate the types of work taking place in the platform economy, the JPMorgan Chase Institute has identified four different platform sectors:
1. The transportation sector, in which drivers transport people or goods;
2. The non-transport work sector, in which workers offer a growing variety of services including dog walking, home repair, telemedicine, and many others;
3. The selling sector, in which independent sellers of goods find buyers through online marketplaces; and
4. The leasing sector, in which lessors find lessees to rent homes, parking spaces, and many other types of assets.
About The JPMorgan Chase Institute
The JPMorgan Chase Institute is a think tank dedicated to delivering data-rich analyses and expert insights for the public good. Its aim is to help decision makers–policymakers, businesses, and nonprofit leaders–appreciate the scale, granularity, diversity, and interconnectedness of the global economic system and use timely data and thoughtful analysis to make more informed decisions that advance prosperity for all. Drawing on JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s unique proprietary data, expertise, and market access, the Institute develops analyses and insights on the inner workings of the global economy, frames critical problems, and convenes stakeholders and leading thinkers. For more information visit: JPMorganChaseInstitute.com.
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