This page contains data and analysis published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) from 15 to 19 June 2020. Go to our live page for the most up-to-date insights on COVID-19.


19 June 2020

Deaths involving COVID-19 by religious group

People identifying as Muslim, Jewish or Hindu in England and Wales are more vulnerable to death involving the coronavirus (COVID-19).

When standardised for age, the Muslim religious group had the highest mortality rates at 198.9 deaths per 100,000 males and 98.2 deaths per 100,000 females. People who identified as Jewish, Hindu or Sikh also showed higher mortality rates than other groups.

For males aged 9 to 64 years, those identifying as Muslim have a raised rate of death involving COVID-19 compared with all other religious groups, at 46 deaths per 100,000. Among females, those who identified as Muslim, Sikh or Hindu had higher mortality rates compared with the Christian and no religion populations.

Age-standardised mortality rate of death involving COVID-19 for those aged 9 to 64 years by sex and religious group, England and Wales, 2 March to 15 May 2020

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Notes:
  1. ONS figures based on death registrations up the 29 May that occurred between 2nd March and 15th May which could be linked to the 2011 Census for the COVID-19 rate of death.
  2. Deaths were defined using the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD-10). Deaths involving COVID-19 include those with an underlying cause, or any mention, of ICD-10 codes U07.1 (COVID-19, virus identified) or U07.2 (COVID-19, virus not identified).
  3. Age-standardised rates of death involving COVID-19 can be interpreted as deaths per 100,000 of the population during the period at risk.
  4. Horizontal lines on bars represent 95% confidence intervals.
  5. Due to low counts, rates for those identifying as Buddhist, Jewish and ‘other religion’ are deemed unreliable and are denoted with a *; rates for Jewish and Buddhist females not calculated and are denoted with a ^.

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For males aged 65 years and over, those identifying as Jewish or Muslim have a raised rate of death involving COVID-19 compared with all other religious groups, at 795 deaths per 100,000 and 755 deaths per 100,000 respectively. For females aged 65 years and over, those who identified as Hindu, Muslim or Jewish had a higher rate of death involving COVID-19 compared with all other religious groups.

Age-standardised COVID-19-related mortality rates for those aged 65 years and over by sex and religious group, England and Wales, 2 March to 15 May 2020

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Notes:
  1. ONS figures based on death registrations up the 29 May that occurred between 2nd March and 15th May which could be linked to the 2011 Census.
  2. Deaths were defined using the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD-10). Deaths involving COVID-19 include those with an underlying cause, or any mention, of ICD-10 codes U07.1 (COVID-19, virus identified) or U07.2 (COVID-19, virus not identified).
  3. Age-standardised rates of COVID-19 related death can be interpreted as deaths per 100,000 of the population during the period at risk.
  4. Horizontal lines on bars represent 95% confidence intervals.

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19 June 2020

Deaths involving COVID-19 by ethnic group

Males from a Black ethnic background had a higher age-standardised mortality rate (ASMR) of death involving the coronavirus (COVID-19) than those from other ethnic backgrounds.

Their ASMR of death was 2.9 times greater than that of White males.

Analysis also revealed raised death rates among males in Bangladeshi or Pakistani, Indian, and other ethnic groups. Males in these ethnic groups had rates 2.2 times, 1.8 times and 1.9 times higher than those of White ethnic background, respectively.

Females had a lower rate of death involving COVID-19 than males across all ethnic groups, with Black females having less than half the rate of Black males.

The pattern for females was largely like that of males. Females of Black ethnic background had the highest rate of death involving COVID-19, at 119.8 deaths per 100,000. This was 2.3 times higher than that of White females.

All other ethnic groups, other than Chinese, had a statistically significantly raised rate of death compared with White females.


19 June 2020

Deaths involving COVID-19 by disability status

Disabled females “limited a lot” died from coronavirus (COVID-19) related deaths in England and Wales at almost four times the rate of females who were not disabled.

Likewise, disabled males “limited a lot” died at 2.8 times the rate of non-disabled males from COVID-19-related deaths, analysis has revealed.

For those disabled but “limited a little”, the differences were smaller but still statistically significant. Those responding that their day-to-day activities were “limited a lot” or a “limited a little” were classified as disabled for the purposes of this analysis.

Males whose activities were “limited a lot” at the 2011 Census had an all ages standardised mortality rate of death involving COVID-19 of 199.7 deaths per 100,000; for females, the rate was 141.1 deaths per 100,000. The equivalent rates for males and females not disabled in 2011 were 70.2 and 35.6 deaths per 100,000 respectively.

After adjusting for region, population density, and socio-demographic and household characteristics, the contrast in rates between those “limited a lot” and not disabled was 2.4 times greater for females and 1.9 times greater for males.

It is likely that the number of people who are recorded as having an activity-limiting condition is now an underestimate, because those not limited in 2011 may have developed a long-term health condition over the past nine years that limits their activities or any existing health condition may have worsened in severity causing them to become limited, changing their disability status.


19 June 2020

Public sector borrowing

Today’s public sector finances figures reflect the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown and the government’s support for individuals and businesses.

Tax receipts and National Insurance contributions (on a national accounts basis) were only two-thirds of those collected in May 2019, while central government spending increased by half over the same period.

As a result, borrowing in May 2020 was provisionally estimated to be £55.2 billion, roughly nine times more than in May 2019 and £5 billion more than market expectation.

Borrowing estimates are subject to greater than usual uncertainty because of their partial reliance on forecast data, with April 2020 being revised down by £13.6 billion to £48.5 billion; this is largely because of stronger than previously estimated tax receipts and National Insurance contributions along with lower than previously estimated expenditure on the furlough schemes.

The need for the extra funding required to support the government’s coronavirus relief schemes has pushed debt at the end of May 2020 to 100.9% of gross domestic product (GDP); this is the first time that debt as a percentage of GDP has exceeded 100% since the financial year ending March 1963.

However, it should be noted that the GDP estimates used to create this ratio depend partially on forecast data, which again are subject to greater than usual uncertainty.


19 June 2020

Retail sales

The volume of retail sales in Great Britain saw an uplift in May but remains at low levels following record falls in March and April 2020.

According to our latest data, retail sales volumes rebounded in May 2020 with an increase of 12.0% on April. Sales were still down by 13.1% on February, before the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Non-food stores provided the largest positive contribution to the monthly growth in May, aided by a strong increase of 42.0% in household goods stores. Sales in hardware, paints and glass stores returned to levels experienced before the government’s restrictions, with the reopening of stores such as garden centres in mid-May.

A boom in online sales during the coronavirus pandemic has contributed to a growth in non-store retailing sales volumes of 21% in the three months to May 2020. The proportion spent online hit a record level of 33.4% in May 2020. In February 2020, this proportion had been 19.6%.


18 June 2020

Deferring going to university

Students who applied to attend university are due to reply to their offers on Thursday (18 June 2020), with deferral rates expected to be higher than usual because of uncertainty related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Universities are unlikely to be operating as normal in the next academic year (social distancing guidelines could mean restrictions on face-to-face teaching and social activities), while any students unhappy with A-Level results determined by teachers’ assessments could be unable to sit exams until the autumn.

We have used past data from the Annual Population Survey to examine the outcomes of those aged 16 to 35 years with a degree, depending on whether or not they deferred going to university. We focus on education and work outcomes, although there are many other reasons for choosing to delay starting at university (dependent on people’s personal and family situations).

On average, undergraduate students who deferred were more likely to achieve a first-class degree and more likely to have gone on to obtain a higher degree than those who went straight to university from school. This is consistent across groups who graduated before, during and after the last economic recession in 2008.

Nearly one in five students who deferred went on to gain a first-class degree

Percentage of 16- to 35-year-olds with degree, by whether they deferred, UK, 2019

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The employment picture is a little more nuanced.

In line with the workforce as a whole, both groups have seen unemployment fall since 2008. However, the decline has been more pronounced among those who deferred, with just 2.1% unemployed in 2019 (down from 5.0% for those who graduated before the last crisis).

People who deferred going to university were slightly more likely to be in a high-skilled job in 2019 than those who went straight from school (47.3% compared with 44.6%). This reverses the trend seen among those who graduated before the 2008 recession.

Meanwhile, both groups are slightly more likely to be doing a low-skilled job than they were 10 years ago.

People who deferred going to university are now more likely to be in a high-skilled job than those who went straight from school

Percentage of 16- to 35-year-olds in high-, mid- and low-skilled jobs, by whether they deferred, UK, 2008 and 2019

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Notes:
  1. 'Low', 'Mid' and 'High' skilled occupations are defined using the 2010 Standard Occupational Codes framework whereby 'High skill' = Level 4, 'Mid-skill' = Levels 2&3 and 'Low-skill'=Level 1.

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The distribution of skilled jobs within each group is not necessarily reflected by pay, with average employee earnings (pre-tax) higher among people who went to university straight from school compared with those who deferred (£608 per week compared with £577).


18 June 2020

Personal and economic well-being

Our latest figures on people’s personal and economic well-being in Great Britain cover the period from 20 March to 7 June 2020 and help us understand the impact of coronavirus.

While our day-to-day emotions like happiness and anxiety have improved since the beginning of lockdown, our assessment of life overall, such as our life satisfaction and feeling that the things we do are worthwhile, have remained subdued since 20 March 2020 as we consider not only what is happening right now, but what the future may hold.

As anxiety has fallen, the time we think it will take for things to return to normal has increased and 1 in 4 of us now expect it will take over a year or will never go back to normal.

Economic worries remain at the forefront of people’s concerns as 12.5 million people say their households’ finances have been affected by COVID-19. As lockdown progressed up to 7 June, there were signs of increases in economic inequality as there were more people negatively impacted financially at the bottom of the income distribution than at the top.

We found stark differences between different parts of the population, as parents, the self-employed, lower-income individuals, the lonely and those who felt unsafe in the home reported the biggest impacts. For example, parents were twice as likely to report a reduced income and were more likely to be furloughed than people without children, while home-schooling has negatively affected some families’ well-being.


16 June 2020

UK labour market

Our latest figures on the UK labour market highlight some of the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown, including falls in the total number of hours worked, the number of job vacancies, and earnings growth.

The UK employment rate was 76.4% for the three months to April 2020, 0.1 percentage points down on the previous quarter. This included a record decrease in the number of self-employed – down by 131,000. Employment remained 0.3 percentage points higher than a year earlier.

The number of people temporarily away from work, including furloughed workers, rose by 6 million at the end of March into April, leading to a large fall in hours worked. The total number of hours worked in the three months to April 2020 was 959.9 million, down a record 94.2 million (8.9%) hours on the previous year.

Employees’ average pay growth slowed noticeably in April. The three months from February to April saw total pay fall in real terms for the first time since January 2018; pay declined in industries where furloughing was most prominent, many of these being the lowest-paying industries, in particular accommodation and food service activities.

Experimental estimates of the number of payroll employees using HM Revenue and Customs' (HMRC’s) Pay As You Earn (PAYE) Real Time Information (RTI) show a fall in paid employees in recent months. Early estimates for May 2020 indicate that the number of payroll employees fell by 2.1% (612,000) compared with March 2020.

The number of job vacancies in the UK had the largest quarterly fall in the history of the time series in the three months to May 2020, dropping by 342,000 to 476,000.

The UK unemployment rate for the three months to April 2020 was 3.9%, unchanged on the previous quarter. The claimant count has been increasing through to May 2020, and is now at 2.8 million (an increase of 1.6 million since March 2020). There have been changes in the number of employed people who are eligible for Universal Credit, as part of the government response to the coronavirus pandemic.


15 June 2020

People who are shielding

As of 14 May 2020, an estimated 2.2 million people in England had been identified by health professionals as being clinically extremely vulnerable to the coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result, they were sent a letter and advised to shield until at least the end of June 2020.

Our latest survey results from 28 May to 3 June 2020 indicate the extent to which people have followed the advice, and the impact of shielding on mental health.

It is hard to pinpoint the number of people who have completely followed shielding guidance. Almost half (49%) of those asked to shield reported leaving the house at least once since receiving the guidance, and a further 13% received visitors in the last seven days (who were not a nurse or support or care worker).

Both of those things were inconsistent with advice up to 1 June 2020, which required the individual to stay in their house or garden with no visitors (except from a nurse or support or care worker). However, from 1 June advice changed to allow people shielding to leave home for exercise.

More than one-third (35%) of clinically extremely vulnerable people report a worsening of their mental health since receiving shielding guidance, equivalent to 785,000 people.

Among those aged under 50 years and between 50 and 59 years, almost half report worsening mental health (46% and 45% respectively). This compares with 26% and 23% of those aged between 70 and 74 years and over 75 years respectively. Women were more likely to report a worsening of mental health (40%) than men (28%).


15 June 2020

Lockdown anxiety

People who are married or in a civil partnership were more likely to report high anxiety than those in other marital status groups during the first weeks of lockdown.

The coronavirus and anxiety release examines the factors most strongly associated with high anxiety during lockdown in Great Britain, from 3 April to 10 May 2020. These include loneliness, marital status, sex, disability, whether someone feels safe at home or not and work being affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The percentage who reported high levels of anxiety significantly increased for people who are married or in a civil partnership during lockdown to 39%, up from 19% in the last quarter of 2019. Those who are married or in a civil partnership are more likely to be balancing homeschooling alongside other commitments, with 1 in 4 people homeschooling during the pandemic, compared with approximately 1 in 10 people who are single, separated or divorced.

Feeling lonely was the factor most strongly associated with reporting high anxiety.

Those reporting that they “Always” or “Often” feel lonely were almost five times more likely to have higher levels of anxiety than those who “never” feel lonely

Odds ratios of factors affecting high anxiety, Great Britain, 3 April and 10 May 2020

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Notes:
  1. Respondents were asked “Overall, how anxious did you feel yesterday?” and answered on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is “not at all” and 10 is “completely”. The outcome variable for the regression model is binary whereby high anxiety are those who scored between 6 and 10 and not high anxiety are those who scored between 0 and 5.
  2. The error bars show the degree of confidence of the estimates, where these cross ‘equally likely’ the estimate is not statistically significantly different from the reference category.
  3. The 95% confidence intervals highlights the degree of uncertainty around an estimate. Non-overlapping confidence intervals suggest a statistically significant difference between groups.
  4. For details on the statistical model, read the full report.

Age has also had a significant impact on anxiety ratings during the coronavirus. Those aged 75 years and over are almost twice as likely as those aged 16 to 24 years to report high anxiety during lockdown. Analysis of data prior to lockdown suggests anxiety tends to be lowest among those aged from their mid to late 60s, remaining relatively stable in later years.

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