Small businesses shed almost 20,000 self-employed in one year


Bakeries, greengrocers, butchers, hairdressers? The decline of small businesses is being exacerbated by the pressure of costs and lower sales, an explosive combination that is accelerating the trickle of shop closures that began years ago without this decline being accompanied by an urgent support plan. The proliferation of large shopping centres, the consolidation of online commerce and with it the irruption into the market of the technological giants, have taken their toll on neighbourhood shops.

This cocktail of bad news has taken almost 20,000 self-employed people with it in the last year, but it is not the only one that has shed staff, as it has also happened in agriculture (2,953), industry (3,130), financial activities (725) and hotels and catering, with 2,753 fewer self-employed people, according to data from the Ministry of Social Security published on Tuesday.

At the end of June there were 3,351,381 self-employed workers in Spain, just thirteen more than a year ago, which leads ATA, the largest association of the self-employed, to predict that 2023 will end in negative figures. At the moment, 6,665 self-employed workers were added to the Social Security system in June, the lowest figure in a decade.

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The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.