Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Unemployment - hidden activity?

I Wonder How Many Unemployed Folks Are Hustling

But the idea here is that "hustling" is any kind of economic activity that you are not reporting to the government; either because you don't want to go to jail or just don't want to pay taxes or for them to know how much you make.
Are my hypothetical self and this real life person the majority of the unemployed? Of course not. But you've got to at least wonder how many of them are out there.

Probably the most important part of that measure would be a measure of the change in that during the employment cycle. If it were say 2% of the population every year while the IRS might want to know it isn't a huge factor in thinking about the state of the economy and employment. If it is 8% of the population today, and was 2% 5 years ago, that would be more interesting and let you know the situation may not be as bad as you think (looking just at employment data). I personally doubt it is a significant macro-economic factor (the variation in it during the employment cycle).

Looking at this rate between countries would probably provide valuable information. Some of the Euro and bank scandals have shown the underpaying of taxes by Europeans and also the rich Americans suing to prevent disclosure of their fraudulent tax avoidance aided by large bailed out banks.

Related: How do I Know What Unemployment Statistics Mean? - Another 663,000 Jobs Lost in March, 2009 in the USA - Can Bankers Avoid Taking Responsibility Again?

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