23% of Working Americans Now Have Side Hustles

delivery man

The side hustle has never been more germane to the U.S. consumer, as large numbers of employed people have taken on extra work in the face of 40-year inflationary highs.

consumer employment and income

In “New Reality Check: The Paycheck-to-Paycheck Report — The Supplemental Income Edition,” a PYMNTS and LendingClub collaboration, our latest survey in this series finds that as the number of consumer living between checks has remained relatively consistent, more people are taking on second jobs or extra work to take some of the pressure off of those primary paychecks.

Per the latest study, “Nearly two-thirds of consumers report being employed, and close to half of this group also have a side job or other source of supplemental income. While almost one-quarter of consumers have a side job, 17% have other types of supplemental income, and paycheck-to-paycheck consumers are most likely to have such additional sources of income.”

We found that among consumers living paycheck to paycheck, 35% of those with issues paying their bills have now an additional source of income. It’s the same with 33% of those living without difficulty, with each share above the average of 29% for all consumers surveyed.

Breaking it down, our data shows that 23% of consumers have a side job, and 17% have other types of supplemental income. “Side jobs are the most common solutions for paycheck-to-paycheck consumers — 30% of these consumers with issues paying their bills and 26% without hold a side job. In contrast, only 17% of those not living paycheck to paycheck have a side job; 13% receive other sources of supplemental income,” the study states.

What are workers doing to earn extra money? It’s a mix of regular side jobs — think rideshare drivers and the like — and people earning money doing things they may enjoy, like selling items on marketplaces like Etsy or even using gig platforms like TaskRabbit in their spare time.

“Among consumers not living paycheck to paycheck who had a side job in the last six months, 70% opted for the side job because the income was easy to earn and 56% said their motivation was enjoying doing the job,” according to The Supplemental Income Edition “Also, consumers not living paycheck to paycheck said the same about earning income from informal tasks or selling artisan or used products in the last three months, at 77% and 61% respectively.”

Read: New Reality Check: The Paycheck-to-Paycheck Report: The Supplemental Income Edition