Friday, September 9, 2016

"I'll sell you a beer today and you sell me one tomorrow"

Percentage of working age population working at food services and drinking places:
Percentage of working age population working in "leisure and hospitality" jobs:


CP said...

About 70% of leisure and hospitality workers work in food service, and the L&H time series goes back much further.


Anonymous said...

A really optimistic friend of mine who likes to interpret all economic data through the rose-colored Hayekian lens of "spontaneous order" would interpret this as people spontaneously deciding they have a compelling career opportunity in food service and/or suddenly taking on part-time jobs in the food service industry as part of their revealed preference of just thinking it's a ball to take orders.

He says the same thing with the rise of Uber-- people aren't whoring out their cars and their time to drive people around for below minimum wage because there aren't better opportunities in the market, but because this IS the best opportunity according to their preferences and they are so excited by the idea of being an entrepreneur and being their own boss, etc. etc.

It's pretty hard to talk to people that think like that, in part because it doesn't even sound sincere when he says it and in part because it's a total confusion of the core economic concepts being relied upon to make the argument.

I'd call this chart a good piece of economic art illustrating the "hollowing out" of the productive economy.