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34 Million Gig Workers Do Not Separate Their Personal and Business Bank Accounts Finds Abound

Independent contractors, freelancers, content creators, on-call workers, and merchants are looking for bank apps and feature-rich accounts to help them manage the day-to-day financial obligations of self-employment, like tracking deductions, setting aside tax payments, budgeting, and even invoicing, as currently, the 68 million workers in the independent economy don’t have anyone adequately serving them.

In order to understand more about this population and its banking successes and struggles, Abound turned to independent workers themselves, surveying 421 US workers, to find out about their banking habits, how they manage their accounts, if they’re satisfied with their options right now, and what their ideal bank account would look like. The company has released the findings from its new Banking the Independent Economy 2021 Report.

It’s estimated that by 2025, over half of workers will be independent — but they are an underserved market when it comes to banking options, and don’t see the tools out there that fit their daily lives. This means that banks wanting to serve a new target audience and grow the future of the independent economy can step into this gap in the industry.

Abound’s CEO, Trent Bigelow said: “While independent workers are a niche market today, with over 68 million independent workers in the US alone, in the future this growing market will make up half of all US workers. Traditional banks failing to serve this market now creates a perfect opportunity for challenger banks and fintechs to come in and win the market with purpose-built and automated solutions for independent workers.”

Key Findings: 

  • 51% don’t have a separate account for their business income. Half of the respondents pool their self-employed income into their personal accounts.
  • 46% want to open a new account in the next year. Of those who don’t use separate accounts, nearly half want to open one — translating into 16 million of the 68 million current independent workers as potential future customers.
  • Only half are very satisfied with their bank. 51% are very satisfied with their current bank, while 34% are only somewhat satisfied, and 15% aren’t satisfied at all.
  • Dissatisfaction is from high fees, a lack of features, and poor customer service. The fees that frustrate them the most are monthly maintenance fees and overdraft fees.
  • 68% say they are likely to change banks in the next year. Additionally, 52% say they would switch if another bank offered lower fees.
  • An ideal banking account would be mobile, identify tax-deductible expenses, and automatically set aside money for taxes. Independent workers are looking for a bank account that will help them navigate the financial management that comes with being self-employed.

Author

  • Francis is a journalist with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist interest in North and South America.

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