Sharing is caring: Peer to peer economy now worth over $15 billion a year

Higher levels of consumer trust in the sharing economy, have coincided with a $600 million increase in size over the past six months, according to a newly released report.

The bi-annual Sharing Economy Trust Index, produced by peer-to-peer lender RateSetter, showed that trust in ride sharing platforms such as Uber and online marketplaces like eBay have grown the most.  

“Our research found that trust levels in the sharing economy have increased substantially over the last six months,” said Daniel Foggo, RateSetter CEO.

With the sharing economy now worth over $15 billion a year, the study revealed that over two thirds of Australians actively participate in the market - whether by spending or earning.

Single, independent adults were found to be the biggest earners in the sharing economy, making an average $158 a month through the market, while families with young children were the biggest spenders - $134 a month on average.

Online marketplaces such as Ebay and Etsy remained by far the most popular way to make money through the sharing economy, while ride sharing, online outsourcing, peep-to-peer lending, and accommodation sharing also proved popular with Australians.

Aside from earning money, consumers can also use the sharing economy to save on goods and services. If we take peer to peer lending as an example, Mozo’s database shows a borrower with a good credit score could secure a rate of just 8.90% by taking out a personal loan with peer to peer lender RateSetter. That compares to the average 12.21% rate offered by the big banks.

With new players such as courier service Sherpa and dog sitting service Madpaws frequently entering the growing market, Foggo stated that their success can largely be tied to the reputation and value for money offered by existing companies.  

“Newer entrants are benefitting from the halo effect of established players such as eBay and AirBnB, helping people understand the value and quality of services offered by these platforms as both a buyer and a seller,” he said.

The sharing economy is likely to continue to boom in future years, with RateSetter predicting it to be worth as much as $55 billion by 2021.

Looking for a personal loan to help buy that new car or pay for that overseas holiday? Here at Mozo we compare around 180 personal loans, including those offered by peer to peer lenders to help you secure a competitive deal.