Labour Market Outlook Q3 2021

Prospects for unemployment after the Job Retention Scheme

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As the economy has continued to reopen over the summer, the labour market has continued to surprise on the upside. After peaking at 5.2 per cent in Q4 2020, the headline unemployment rate has continued to fall, reaching 4.7 per cent in Q2 2021 – and timelier, though more volatile, single-month data has the unemployment … Continued

Football went to Rome, holidays came home

The impact of ‘staycations’ on the UK’s labour market

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As with last year, many holiday makers will be spending this summer in the UK. So in this Spotlight we look at the implications of another year of ‘staycations’ for the UK’s labour market. The tourism industry has been hit hard by the Covid-19 crisis For much of the past 18 months there have been … Continued

Out of the woods?

Young people's mental health and labour market status as the economy reopens

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Much has been said about the plight of young people during the Covid-19 crisis, both in terms of their labour market and mental health circumstances. This spotlight provides a timely update on how young people were faring at the end of May, shortly after the major relaxation of restrictions in mid-May. The proportion of economically-active … Continued

The beginning of the end

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The furlough scheme is less than 90 days from closing down, with 1 July 2021 marking the beginning of its wind-down now that employers are contributing 10 per cent of furloughed employees’ wages. This short note looks at which sectors, people and places are currently more likely to be using the scheme and what this … Continued

Understanding the labour market: pandemic not pandemonium

The labour market is normalising, not overheating

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The mild euphoria phase of the economic commentary cycle has arrived somewhat earlier than after previous downturns. This is a big change from the excessive pessimism of late 2020. According to some, we have “eye popping growth” to look forward to as “Brexit Britain Booms”. For the labour market, this turn to optimism has seen … Continued

Boom(erang) Time?

An analysis of younger adults living with their parents

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Different data sources tell different stories about the share of younger people that have lived with their parents during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, even before the pandemic younger people on lower-pay and in more precarious forms of work were more likely to live with their parents.

Double trouble

Exploring the labour market and mental health impact of Covid-19 on young people

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This report marks the beginning of a three-year programme of research at the Resolution Foundation investigating the relationship between the labour market and mental health outcomes of young people. In this launch paper, we focus on how young people have fared throughout the pandemic period when it comes to work and mental health.

After shocks

Financial resilience before and during the Covid-19 crisis

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This report provides some of the first evidence on how the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on households has differed across countries. It studies the living standards-related factors that contribute to financial resilience (or the lack of it) both before and during Covid-19 in the UK, France and Germany. Overall, we find that pre-crisis vulnerabilities … Continued

Long Covid in the labour market

The impact on the labour market of Covid-19 a year into the crisis, and how to secure a strong recovery

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This is the third time we have written a report taking stock of the impact of the virus on the labour market. Nine months on from our first report in June last year, some things are similar. The health effects of the second wave may be starting to recede, and thoughts are again turning to … Continued

Ethnic minorities in the hospitality sector

Comparing the experiences of hospitality workers from different ethnic backgrounds

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This briefing note looks at the experiences in the hospitality sector of workers from different ethnic backgrounds. It finds that 1 in 6 hospitality workers are from an ethnic minority background, compared to around 1 in 8 workers in the rest of the economy. Ethnic minority workers in hospitality vary both in their characteristics and … Continued

Failed safe?

Enforcing workplace health and safety in the age of Covid-19

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This briefing note is part of a three-year programme of research exploring labour market enforcement generously funded by Unbound Philanthropy. Using a new survey of 6,000-plus UK working-age adults fielded in September this year, and administrative data from the enforcement agencies themselves, we explore how workers, employers and the regulators have responded to the threat … Continued

Final furlough?

Six months on from the start of the Job Retention Scheme

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At its peak in early May the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (JRS) was supporting 8.9 million jobs. As the economy has opened up in recent months take-up of the scheme has been falling, to 4.8 million by 31 July. Of these, 3.5 million (over 10 per cent of private sector employees) were still furloughed in … Continued

The Government is not paying nine million people’s wages

The number of people currently furloughed is less than half this amount

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From today, employers will start contributing towards the wage costs of furloughed employees. This significant first step in the phasing-out of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (JRS) carries real risks of increased redundancies – particularly for those in the hardest-hit sectors – and so attention should also focus on the important question of just how … Continued

The truth will out

Understanding labour market statistics during the coronavirus crisis

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Labour market statistics matter. In normal times, they offer a snapshot on how household living standards are faring, and in recessions they also provide a key measure of how serious a crisis we face. Because the current coronavirus crisis is rooted in the labour market, even more attention is being paid to the monthly labour … Continued

The Full Monty

Facing up to the challenge of the coronavirus labour market crisis

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The coronavirus crisis has had a severe impact on the country’s health, but also its economy and the labour market with it. With activity across parts of the economy heavily restricted, the Job Retention Scheme saved millions of jobs, firms and incomes. But as the country moves from lockdown into a new, reopening phase of … Continued

Local differences

Responding to the local economic impact of coronavirus

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Britain’s jobs crisis has hit every part of the country hard. At a headline regional level, job loss and furloughing has been fairly evenly spread. But increases in unemployment-related benefit claims have been larger in areas that started out with higher claimant rates, with this especially true when we focus at a more local level. … Continued

The effects of the coronavirus crisis on workers

Flash findings from the Resolution Foundation’s coronavirus survey

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The coronavirus crisis has hit workers hard: the numbers of those furloughed and those newly claiming Universal Credit illustrates the scale. To date, however, we have had very limited information about which types of people have been most affected. In this spotlight, we begin to fill this gap with flash findings from the Resolution Foundation’s … Continued

Launching an economic lifeboat

The impact of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

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Summary Today marks the opening of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (JRS), a scheme entirely without precedent in the UK.    Its primary objective is to share the economic pain of this crisis by keeping unemployment much lower than it otherwise would have been. Indeed, although we estimate that non-working could increase by as much … Continued

Doing more of what it takes

Next steps in the economic response to coronavirus

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The Government has responded to coronavirus by shutting down large parts of the UK economy, and socialising the costs of doing so through a package of fiscal support to firms and individuals unprecedented in size and scope. Given uncertainty about how long public health restrictions will need to be in place, economic policy makers need to be prepared to manage what could … Continued

Crystal balls vs rear-view mirrors

The UK labour market after coronavirus

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Summary Sudden and significant hits to the UK labour market in recent weeks have shown that this will be a jobs recession. The focus has rightly been on how to respond to the huge numbers of people losing work, but policy makers and pundits are also beginning to ask what this crisis could mean for … Continued

Earnings Outlook Q4 2019

How should minimum wage policy respond to the current economic crisis?

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Usually in the Earnings Outlook we summarise the latest developments in pay and employment and use these to look forwards, with the trends moving slowly enough that the lag in our data is not too much of a problem. But with so much having changed so quickly, our normal indicators now serve as a guide … Continued

The times they aren’t a-changin’

Why working hours have stopped falling in London and the UK

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For the typical British adult, paid work takes up more time than any other activity save sleep. How many hours someone works per week is important both for their family’s income and for the way they live their lives. Over the past 200 years average working hours have gradually declined, so that the typical worker … Continued

Under the wage floor

Exploring firms’ incentives to comply with the minimum wage

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This briefing note explores the incentives for firms to comply with the National Living Wage/National Minimum Wage (NLW/NMW). It documents the penalties that firms are subject to; estimates underpaying firms’ rate of detection; and shows that even if detection rates were significantly increased, they would need to go hand-in-hand with higher financial penalties to provide firms with a hard economic incentive to comply with the NLW/NMW.

Never ever

Exploring the increase in people who’ve never had a paid job

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This briefing note explores why, despite record-high employment, the proportion of working-age adults who have never had a paid job has increased, pointing to a reduction in ‘earning while learning’ as a key driver.

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