Britain’s mounting labor market crisis was underscored by a 220,000 slump in employment during the height of the coronavirus lockdown, the worst decline since the global financial crisis.
The fall in the second quarter coincided with a period that saw the most strict restrictions to contain the spread of the disease. The Office for National Statistics said early indicators for July suggest that the number of employees on payrolls is down around 730,000 compared with March
The figures highlight an economic shock that’s expected to escalate as government support for wages is gradually withdrawn from this month. They also heap pressure on Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak to extend the furlough programs that have so far kept the worst of the economic crisis at bay.