Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Patterns in self employment

Addendum II: Et voila! Not only is this graph clearer, but it contains more data. (Thank you Ms. D.L.! I knew blogging would pay off!)

Addendum: I'm looking at this graph from a computer with less resolution than my own and it's fuzzier than I observed earlier. Double the apology! I'll have a clearer graph to post here in the coming days.

Many people dream of being their own boss, but is this why Canadians become self employed?
Some other possible reasons that have been theorized:
a) self employment is a stepping stone to other work
b) self employment is a stepping stone to retirement
c) self employment persists in periods of poor job growth
I produced the graph here using data from Stats Canada's Labour Force Survey. Clicking on the graph will take you to the raw data ($ or affiliation req'd). Sorry for the poor quality, but I'll have to leave it for now and learn my lesson for next time.
I was hoping that periods of recession would be observable, but no such luck.
One interesting observation is that the gap between the per cent of the total self employed and the nonfarming self employed (both unincorporated) is closing. I'm missing a stream of data prior to 1987, but when I plotted data calculated in accordance with the System of National Accounts, the pattern looked similar (with smaller percentile values) and it illustrated a progressively shrinking gap from 1976 to 1987 and onwards.
Notice also that the per cent of total unemployed bottoms out during Canada's great boom beginning in 1987. This is inconsistent with other booms though. Perhaps other factors are at play.
Nothing too exciting here I guess. Sorry for the lack of posts. School has been keeping me busy and uncreative.

No comments: