What Are Some of the Effects of the Economy on Employee Theft?

According to USA Today, employee theft is a good sign for the economy since workers feel more relaxed in taking property from work. On the other hand, experts maintain that employee theft is also indication of a bad economy, forcing people to steal for survival.

USA Today notes that employees who have not been laid off feel overworked to the point where they feel justified in taking items from work. Other employees who have not received raises or promotions in years also feel compelled to steal from an employer. Getting a pay cut also causes workers to steal out of spite.

ABC News mentions a 2008 report from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, revealing that companies in the United States lose 7 percent of annual income from employee theft. This theft ranges from selling ill-gotten gains on the Internet to abusing company credit cards.

According to The Wall Street Journal, a bad economy also spawns employee fraud, and small businesses are the ones most affected. This fraud includes stealing cash at work or check forgery. A bad economy also causes employees to steal for the sake of maintaining a certain lifestyle, or family and friends urge workers with access to cash to begin to stealing. Workers who steal also feel envious of a boss who enjoys an upscale lifestyle while they are struggling to make ends meet.