Teleworking is widening the income gap around the world

FROM OUR OBSESSION

Future of Work

Preparing for a labor force that doesn’t yet exist.

Teleworking is widening income inequality all over the world, according to a new study from the International Monetary Fund.

The ability to work remotely has become a make-or-break factor for many workers during the coronavirus pandemic. Unless their jobs are deemed essential, people who can’t telework face a much higher possibility of cutbacks in hours or pay, temporary furloughs, or permanent layoffs.

IMF economists looked at workers’ ability to telework in 35 countries and estimated about 100 million of them would find it hard to do so either because they work in a field that requires face-to-face interaction or because they don’t have access to the internet. They represent 15% of the workforce in those places.

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