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Impacts of COVID-19 on the Self-employed

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  • Kalenkoski, Charlene Marie
  • Pabilonia, Sabrina Wulff

Abstract

This study estimates random effects and difference-in-difference-in-differences models to examine the initial impacts of COVID-19 on the employment and hours of unincorporated selfemployed workers using monthly panel data from the Current Population Survey. For these workers, effects were visible in March as voluntary social distancing began, largest in April as complete shutdowns occurred, and slightly smaller in May as some restrictions were eased. We find differential effects by gender that favor men, by marital status and gender that favor married men over married women, and by gender, marital, and parental status that favor married fathers over married mothers. The evidence suggests that self-employed married mothers were forced out of the labor force to care for children as prescribed by gender norms and the division and specialization of labor within households. Remote work and working in an essential industry mitigated some of the negative effects on employment and hours.

Suggested Citation

  • Kalenkoski, Charlene Marie & Pabilonia, Sabrina Wulff, 2021. "Impacts of COVID-19 on the Self-employed," GLO Discussion Paper Series 843, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:glodps:843
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    Cited by:

    1. Block, Joern & Kritikos, Alexander S. & Priem, Maximilian & Stiel, Caroline, 2022. "Emergency-aid for self-employed in the Covid-19 pandemic: A flash in the pan?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 93(C).
    2. Maksim Belitski & Christina Guenther & Alexander S. Kritikos & Roy Thurik, 2022. "Economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on entrepreneurship and small businesses," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 58(2), pages 593-609, February.
    3. Charlene Marie Kalenkoski & Sabrina Wulff Pabilonia, 2022. "Impacts of COVID-19 on the self-employed," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 58(2), pages 741-768, February.
    4. Hashemi, Hossein & Rajabi, Reza & Brashear-Alejandro, Thomas G., 2022. "COVID-19 research in management: An updated bibliometric analysis," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 795-810.
    5. Marco Caliendo & Daniel Graeber & Alexander S. Kritikos & Johannes Seebauer, 2023. "Pandemic Depression: COVID-19 and the Mental Health of the Self-Employed," Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, , vol. 47(3), pages 788-830, May.
    6. Farzana Afridi & Amrita Dhillon & Sanchari Roy, 2021. "The gendered crisis: livelihoods and mental well-being in India during COVID-19," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2021-65, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    COVID-19; hours worked; self-employment; entrepreneurship; gender; remote work;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand

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