Published: 11 December 2015

One in four entrepreneurs is aged over 54

According to preliminary data of Statistics Finland’s Employment Statistics for 2014, the number of employed persons was slightly under 2.3 million. Of them, 243,000 or 10.7 per cent of all employed had the occupational status of entrepreneur. Of entrepreneurs, 27 per cent were aged over 54 and only two per cent under 25. Women's share of entrepreneurs was 33 per cent. Entrepreneurs include farmers.

Employed persons by occupational status in 1987 to 2014*

Employed persons by occupational status in 1987 to 2014*
*Preliminary data

Share of entrepreneurs among the employed grew

Between 1987 and 2014, the share of entrepreneurs among the employed was at its lowest in 2008 when it was 10.1 per cent (appendix table 1). By 2014, the share grew to 10.7 per cent. Even though the overall number of entrepreneurs decreased by over 2,000 persons from 2013 (-0.8%), the share of entrepreneurs among the employed increased slightly. The increase in the share of entrepreneurs is explained by the fact that the number of wage and salary earners relative to entrepreneurs decreased more. There were almost 32,000 (-1.6%) fewer wage and salary earners than in 2013.

The share of entrepreneurs among the employed was at its highest during the recession years of the early 1990s when the number of wage and salary earners decreased significantly. In 1993, nearly 16 per cent of the employed were entrepreneurs. After 1994, the share of entrepreneurs among the employed declined evenly until 2008.

The number of entrepreneurs since 2008 is partially affected by the definition of entrepreneur becoming wider. Since the beginning of 2009, grant recipients have been insured under statutory employment pension security in accordance with the Farmers’ Pension Act (MYEL), which means that they are classified as entrepreneurs. Expansion of the definition of entrepreneurs in the Self-Employed Persons’ and the Farmers’ Pensions Acts and consideration of entrepreneur pay increased the number of entrepreneurs in 2010 to 2011.

One in three entrepreneurs is a woman

Of employed men, 14.5 per cent were entrepreneurs while the share for women was 7.1 per cent. The share of entrepreneur men of the employed has grown evenly over the past years. No change has occurred in the share of entrepreneur women during the review period. The share of women among entrepreneurs in the entire country was 33 per cent in 2014.

Examined by age, most entrepreneurs were found in the age group 55 to 64 of whom nearly 15 per cent were entrepreneurs. In all age groups, there were more entrepreneur men than women. Among both men and women most entrepreneurs were found in the age groups 45 to 54 and 55 to 64: the share of entrepreneur men was around 20 per cent in both age groups and the corresponding share of entrepreneur women nine per cent (appendix table 2). The share of entrepreneur men among the employed was double or even higher compared to entrepreneur women, apart from the youngest age group of 18 to 24. The share of entrepreneurs in the youngest age group was under three per cent of the employed.

Entrepreneur men and women by age group in 2014*

Entrepreneur men and women by age group in 2014*
*Preliminary data

Examined by region, most entrepreneurs were found in South Ostrobothnia (15.6%), Etelä-Savo (14.4%) and Central Ostrobothnia (14.2%). The share of entrepreneurs among the employed in the region was lowest in Uusimaa, where the share was 8.5 per cent.


Source: Employment Statistics, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Laura Lohikoski 029 551 3396, tyossakaynti@stat.fi

Director in charge: Jari Tarkoma

Publication in pdf-format (217.1 kB)

Tables

Tables in databases

Appendix tables


Updated 11.12.2015

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Employment [e-publication].
ISSN=2323-6825. Background information on unemployed persons 2014. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 26.8.2019].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/tyokay/2014/03/tyokay_2014_03_2015-12-11_tie_001_en.html