Self-employed ranks boosted by older workers

9 September 2014

People working beyond the retirement age are boosting the ranks of the self-employed to its highest rate in 40 years, a labour market expert has said.

In Wales self-employment has risen since the economic downturn from 13.2% in 2008 to 14.1% in 2013. Jamie Jenkins of the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the number of people working for themselves after 65 had doubled in five years, with fewer people leaving self-employment to work for others.

The self-employed account for three-quarters of the increase in employment seen in the last six years since the financial crisis.

They are likely to keep working until they are older than people who work for someone else and have also seen wages fall significantly in recent years.

On the plus side, self-employed people say they have more control over their lives, but the negatives often include long hours and the difficulty of switching off.