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More than half of those furloughed since May returned to work by mid-August

More than half of those furloughed since May returned to work by mid-August according to data published by the Office for National Statistics.

More than half of those furloughed since May returned to work by mid-August
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  • Staff Reporter
  • September 16, 2020
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At the schemes peak in May, 30 per cent of the workforce across the UK was furloughed, ONS data has shown. However, this share fell by more than half to 11 per cent by mid-August.

In total, 9.6 million employments have been furloughed through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRSfor at least part of the period between March and June. These claims have been made by 1.16 million employers, with 61 per cent of eligible employers claiming. 

“As today’s official employment figures today show, the furlough scheme has done what it was designed to do – save jobs and help people back to work, where they want to be,” said the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak.

“We were clear at the start of the pandemic that we couldn’t save every job, but the furlough scheme has supported millions of workers and we want to help employers keep people on.

“Our Job Retention Bonus will do exactly that, supporting businesses to do the right thing.”

ONS data revealed that employees of small and micro-sized employers were more likely to have been furloughed than those working for medium-sized and large employers: 57 per cent of employments at employers with five to nine employees had been furloughed against just 21 per cent at employers with 250 or more employees.

The ONS Business Impact of Coronavirus Survey also suggested that the flow of employees off furlough has been steady, falling by 6 per cent in late July and a further 6 per cent in early August.

As of 31 August, the total value of all CJRS claims made was £37.5 billion.

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