VALENCIA (EFE). Most Spanish self-employed do not see an improvement in their situation in the first quarter of 2023 compared to the same period of the previous year, since 45.6% say it is the same and 33.6% worse, while almost 21% recognize that their activity has grown.

This is demonstrated by the XVII Barometer of the association of self-employed workers of ATA, presented this Monday by its president, Lawrence Loveand which reveals that the generalized rise in prices and the escalation in the costs of raw materials “are seriously jeopardizing the continuity of many self-employed workers”, by “increasing their expenses above sales”.

With regard to future prospects, 19.7% of the self-employed believe that their business will grow in the coming monthscompared to 32% who anticipate their activity will decrease and 37.8% who expect it to be the same as in previous months.

Asked about its revenue in the first quarter of 2023, 19.8% of the self-employed say it has increased compared to March 2022although only 4.1% of them speak of a growth of their business superior to 20%, while 38% answer that it remained the same and 19.8% that it decreased.

Expenses have been another of the themes presented in the ATA Barometer. More than 85.3% say they increased, 10.2% say they were similar and only 4.6% acknowledge having suffered a reduction.

Faced with this situation of rising costs, 68.1% of professionals surveyed say they have had to raise priceswhile 27.6% guarantee that they have assumed the increase in expenses and have maintained prices, although 65.5% of them affirm that if everything continues as before, they will be forced to increase them in the coming months.

The self-employed models are maintained

Of the 53.4% ​​of self-employed workers who claim to have workers under their care, 38.4% claim to have managed to maintain the workforce; 11% were forced to reduce it and only 4.1% increased it.

Looking ahead to the next few months, 10% of the self-employed say they will have to reduce their workforce if things continue as they have been, 33.3% expect to be able to keep it as it currently is and 4% consider that they will hire new workers.

Late payment is “one of the main problems” of this group and according to the ATA barometer, it continues to affect 38.3% of self-employed workers (6.4% by public entities, 7.9% both public and private and 24% by other private companies).

22% of independent workers, “very confused” with RETA

National Federation of Autonomous Workers Associations dedicates part of the barometer to RETA’s reform which went into operation on January 1, 2023.

Thus, only 12.5% ​​of self-employed workers surveyed claim to have communicated their income forecast to adjust their share of self-employed workers to their actual income, while 60.3% say they have not communicated this and 22.5% % acknowledge being “very intrigued by the new listing and claim not to know whether or not they have made such communication.”

Of those 12.5% ​​who communicated their income, 53.1% say that their quota payable has decreased, against 33.6% who claim that the amount payable has increased.