Not everyone gets a regular, stable paycheck.
There’s a long article in the New York Times Magazine on Even, the startup that tries to help workers with volatile incomes by smoothing out their paychecks. The idea is to average out the amount that a user has coming in, then distribute it in regular chunks. If they get paid more one week, that goes into a savings account. If they take in less, Even either pays them out of their own savings account or extends credit interest free.
This could be invaluable for people who work irregular schedules, but it will only work if the users are actually making enough money to cover their bills.
Anand Giridharadas writes in the NYT Mag:
For Even to thrive, it will probably need to avoid the truly needy: those who don’t have enough ever, not merely right now. Picking winners also means picking — and spurning — losers. Even’s purpose is hardly to change the distribution of wealth in society. It is simply to redistribute one person’s own limited wealth across time. People in Silicon Valley may believe there’s an app for everything. That’s their hammer. But improving the lot of the poor will require other tools, including an old one the valley often wants to wish away: politics.
It’s a step forward, but not much of a solution.
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