Numbers on furlough fall to lowest level since start of pandemic

Chancellor Rishi Sunak. Image: Gov.uk

The number of people on furlough has fallen to the lowest level since the start of the pandemic as the UK economy continues to rebound and businesses reopen, according to new statistics.

The number of people on furlough has fallen to the lowest level since the start of the pandemic as the UK economy continues to rebound and businesses reopen, according to new statistics.

Figures show the number of people on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in July stood at 1.6 million, down 340,000 from almost two million at the end of June and a peak of nearly nine million at the height of the pandemic in May last year.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said, “It’s fantastic to see furlough levels at their lowest since the start of the pandemic with young people in particular getting back to work and kickstarting their careers as the UK gets back to business.

“With furlough naturally unwinding and coming to a close at the end of the month we are doubling down on our Plan for Jobs – focusing our support on giving people the skills and opportunities they need to succeed in the jobs of tomorrow,” he added on September 9.

The number of people on furlough in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector, as well as accommodation and food services have seen particularly large reductions in the number of jobs on furlough over the course of the summer, with numbers furloughed from these sectors declining by 26,200 and 96,700 in July respectively.

The latest statistics for the Self Employment Income Support Scheme show a consistent fall in demand since the beginning of the scheme. Across all five grants, 9.9 million claims have been made and more than £27 billion has been claimed by almost three million people.


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Written by

Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.

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