Shoring Up Shortfalls: Women, Retirement and the Growing GigSupp Economy
In recent years, high-profile Silicon Valley firms have engineered billion-dollar IPOs through developing online and app-based platforms that connect service providers and sellers with customers and process their payments (the “online platform economy”). Today, millions of Americans earn income using platforms developed by Uber, Etsy, and Airbnb; and research has identified the limitations of existing federal tax rules to facilitate tax compliance of these workers and considered the consequences of their failure to pay self-employment taxes. However, questions remain as to the changing demographics and motivations of online platform economy workers and their retirement income security. Titled, Shoring Up Shortfalls: Women, Retirement and the Growing Gig Economy, we propose to identify and analyze: (i) the existing demographic data on this workforce; (ii) their economic motivations and retirement income needs; and (iii) the federal tax, retirement policy, and financial literacy proposals that would enable the gig economy workforce to support itself in retirement.