Side Gig Income Becomes More Critical

As the labor market cools and inflation heats up, a new Bankrate survey indicates that secondary problems are a necessity for a growing number of Americans. The old main motivations for secondary commitment, such as paying off debts and saving, have given way to a more pressing need: reaching the end of the month.

Our recent high school survey found that 41 percent of American adults with a secondary job in 2022 need extra income to pay for their daily expenses, up from 31 percent when we last asked it in 2019. Less is spending this money on savings ( 17 percent). compared to 24 percent in 2019) and using it for discretionary spending (26 percent versus 36 percent in 2019).

“Unfortunately, due to high inflation and other financial burdens, more secondary scammers are working on parallel work just to get to the end of the month,” says Ted Rossman, senior analyst at Bankrate Industry. “Instead of using this income to increase savings, eliminate debt or pay for a vacation, there has been a huge increase in people simply using these funds to pay for the expenses of daily living.”

Why Americans Are Struggling in 2022

In 2019, we found that most secondary scammers (36 percent) took on extra work to spend more money. In 2022, that number dropped 10 percentage points.

As expected, inflation is partly to blame for these changes. Thirty-seven percent of secondary scammers are devoting extra time to these shows due to inflation. Forty-eight percent work more or less the same and 16 percent say they work less.

Additional motivational findings

  • Older millennials stand out – 53 percent of older millennials (ages 33 to 41) who have secondary problems need extra money to pay for living expenses (compared to 41 percent of all secondary scammers).
  • Women are more likely to depend on secondary income – 48 percent of women use most of their secondary income for living expenses (compared to 33 percent of men)
    • In addition, men are about twice as likely as women to use their secondary income to save or pay off debt.
  • Generation Z uses the secondary income for fun – With 42 percent, Generation Z secondary scammers are the only generation that claims to use their money primarily for disposable income.
  • Many Republicans are struggling to fight inflation – 47 percent of Republicans, 33 percent of Democrats and 32 percent of independents are increasing their secondary distress commitments due to high inflation.

Men are gaining more with their side efforts in 2022

In addition to being less dependent on their secondary income, men earn almost three times as much as their middle income compared to their female counterparts.

Men $ 1,492 22% 33%
Women $ 571 12% 48%

The average income of each group is much smaller but follows the same trend. For women, the average monthly income from secondary concerts is $ 250, and for men it was $ 500.

Lateral distress is less common but more lucrative in 2022

Among all American adults, 31 percent have a secondary problem in 2022. How does this compare to historical numbers?

  • 2017- 19 percent
  • 2018- 37 percent
  • 2019- 38 percent

While many Americans claim to feel the pressure of record inflation, an unexpected trend is for the number of secondary scammers to drop to 31 percent in 2022 from 38 percent in 2019. This decline could be attributed to rising fuel prices that support popular concert economy. jobs such as shared transportation and delivery services. In addition, rising car prices can cause scammer aspirants to think twice before causing their vehicles to wear out as replacing them could be more expensive.

“I have to wonder if high gas prices and other inflationary pressures are making people wonder whether or not their side efforts are worth it,” says Rossman. “Driving people and making deliveries has become very expensive, as petrol is approaching $ 5 a gallon nationwide. Right now, the most lucrative side issues are probably the ones that can be done from home. Still, inflation can be a problem. if you need to get materials for crafts or other activities “.

Despite this decrease in participation in secondary activities, the average and average income from secondary work has increased since 2019. The average income from secondary concerts in 2022 is $ 996 per month, while the average is $ 400. In 2019, the average monthly income was $ 839 and $ 150 was the average monthly income.

Young millennials work harder, but baby boomers are the ones who earn the most

Millennials are more likely to have a secondary effort (38 percent), followed by Generation Zers (34 percent) and Generation X (33 percent). Only 21 percent of baby boomers have a secondary problem.

Of particular note are young millennials (26 to 32 years old). According to survey responses, 43 percent of young millennials claim to have a secondary effort, the highest percentage of all age groups. The average income of the secondary concerts of this group is 400 USD per month.

  • The average monthly income from side shows of older millennials is $ 250. For Generation X it is $ 400, and for Generation Zer it is $ 200.

Although baby boomers are the generation with the least chance of earning a living, they seem to have the most lucrative side issues. The median among boomers is $ 500 a month. It makes sense in the context of the skills they have acquired and the relationships they have built. Many of these boomers are likely to be involved in well-paid consulting jobs that equate to semi-retirement.

Generation Z (18 to 25 years) 34% $ 200 32%
Millennials (26-41 years) 38% $ 400 46%
Youngest Millennials (26-32 years old) 43% $ 400 39%
Senior Millennials (33-41 years) 34% $ 250 53%
Generation X (42-57 years) 33% $ 400 40%
Baby Boomers (58-76 years) 21% $ 500 40%

Is it really helping people move forward?

While it looks like inflation could erode the gains you would see from your secondary income, it may still be worth the time and effort. “I was expecting to see more secondary scammers in a position to save or pay off debt with these additional funds,” Rossman says. We think that these two activities are still possible in the current economic environment, but managing these additional funds may take a more conscious effort.


This study was conducted for Bankrate by SSRS on its Omnibus Opinion Panel platform. The SSRS Opinion Panel Omnibus is a national, twice-monthly, probability-based survey. Data collection took place between 20 and 23 May 2022 among a sample of 1,000 respondents. The survey was conducted via web (n = 970) and telephone (n = 30) and was administered in English. The margin of error for all respondents is +/- 3.5 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All Omnibus data in the SSRS opinion panel are weighted to represent the target population of American adults 18 and older. Data collection for surveys submitted before 2022 was conducted entirely via the RDD telephone.

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