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Job Satisfaction of Wage and Self-Employed workers. Do preferences make a difference?

Cueto, Begona and Pruneda, Gabriel (2015): Job Satisfaction of Wage and Self-Employed workers. Do preferences make a difference?

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Abstract

A large body of the literature on job satisfaction concludes that self-employed workers enjoy higher levels of job satisfaction than their wage counterparts. In this article, we test this statement by including as an explanatory variable the preference of individuals for either type of employment. Using data drawn from 24,187 workers in the Spanish private sector, our results show that only self-employed workers report higher satisfaction levels than salaried employees when they actually display a preference for self-employment. Our conclusions posit that it is not self-employment per se, but being on the type of employment of preference (wage or self-employment) what contributes to explain the greater job satisfaction of self-employed workers when compared to employees. Additionally, our findings provide evidence on the lower level of satisfaction of reluctant entrepreneurs when compared to latent entrepreneurs. In other words, self-employed workers who prefer salaried employment are less satisfied than employees who report a preference for self-employment.

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