30 July 2020
Results from Wave 9 of our Business Impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) Survey (BICS) for the period 29 June to 12 July 2020 show signs of businesses emerging from the coronavirus restrictions. Of responding businesses, 86% said they had been trading for more than the last two weeks. A further 6% had started trading again within the last two weeks after a pause in trading. Of businesses continuing to trade, 7% of the workforce had returned from furlough in the last two weeks, while 4% had returned from remote working to the normal workplace.
Our latest indicators for the UK economy and society show that between 20 and 26 July, the seven day average of overall footfall increased slightly to just over 60% of its level across the same period in the previous year. This continues the gradual increase in footfall seen since the re-opening of non-essential shops and businesses in England, on 15 June. In June 2020, the volume of retail sales increased by 13.9% when compared with May 2020 as non-food and fuel stores continue their recovery from the sharp falls experienced since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
The latest monthly gross domestic product (GDP) data show that GDP fell by 19.1% in the three months to May, as government restrictions on movement dramatically reduced economic activity. Manufacturing and house building showed signs of recovery as some businesses saw staff return to work.
Labour productivity, measured as output per hour, fell by 0.6% in the year to Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020. However, output per worker fell by 3.1% over the same period, reflecting the impact of furlough schemes. Although the numbers of workers in the economy remained relatively stable, total weekly actual hours fell by 16.7% across the economy in the year to March to May 2020, partially reflecting the 19% of the workforce on furlough most recently reported by BICS.
Provisional estimates indicate public sector borrowing April to June 2020 reached £127.9 billion, more than double that borrowed in the whole of the last full financial year. Central government receipts in June 2020 were down by 16.5% on June 2019, while central government spending increased by 24.8% over the same period, reflecting the emerging effects of government coronavirus policies.
This page is a summary of insights from our most recent analysis and will be updated as new publications are released. Sign up to our email alerts for daily updates in your inbox.
On this page
- Businesses reopening
- Changes in footfall, job adverts and EPCs
- Retail sales
- Higher-paying jobs have most potential for homeworking
- Public sector borrowing
- Business and social indicators show parts of the economy opening up
- UK labour market
- GDP, March to May 2020
- Services, production and construction
- UK trade
- Covering a sudden loss of household income
- Homeworking in April 2020
- Labour market, businesses and trade
- Labour productivity
- Impact on financial accounts
- Consumer trends
- GDP, January to March 2020
- Investment, saving and borrowing
- Imports and exports
- Furloughing of workers across UK businesses
This page was last updated at 09:30 on 30 July 2020.
30 July 2020
The latest publication on the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the economic impacts on the UK provides indicators and analysis from the Business Impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) Survey (BICS).
The accommodation and food service activities sector reported the largest percentage of businesses starting to trade within the last two weeks after a pause in trading, at 33%; 44% of businesses in this sector have been trading for more than the last two weeks.
The accommodation and food service activities sector also reported the highest proportion of the workforce returning from furlough, at 18%, followed by the arts, entertainment and recreation sector, and the construction sector, both at 15%. The arts, entertainment and recreation industry had the highest proportion of the workforce remaining on furlough, at 47%, followed by accommodation and food service activities at 43%.
Of businesses continuing to trade, the sector with the highest percentage of businesses reporting that their turnover increased was the wholesale and retail trade sector, at 22%.
Of businesses who have not stopped trading, 33% had postponed, or cancelled bookings, services and events from 29 June to 12 July 2020. This includes 84% of responding businesses from the arts, entertainment and recreation sector.
30 July 2020
Changes in footfall, job adverts and EPCs
Our latest indicators for the UK economy and society provide information on the economic impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UK, with information on Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs), footfall in different retail locations, job adverts and shipping indicators.
In the week commencing 20 July 2020, EPC lodgements for existing dwellings returned to similar levels observed at the end of February across all regions, while EPC lodgements for new dwellings were around 20% lower across England and Wales. As such, they can be used as a timely indicator for the number of completed constructions and number of transactions.
Between 19 and 26 July 2020, footfall in high streets moderately increased to just under 60% of its level the same day a year ago, while retail parks and shopping centres held steady at just under 80% and 60% respectively.
The volume of job adverts remained at 52% of its 2019 average between 17 and 24 July 2020.
Average daily visits of all ships have remained stable for a fourth consecutive week, and passenger ship visits reached their highest level since the week commencing 30 March 2020.
24 July 2020
The volume of retail sales in Great Britain increased by 13.9% when compared with May 2020 as non-food and fuel stores continue their recovery from the sharp falls experienced since the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
There is a mixed picture in different store types.
In June, while non-food stores and fuel sales show strong monthly growths in the volume of sales at 45.5% and 21.5% respectively, levels have still not recovered from the sharp falls experienced in March and April.
Food stores and non-store retailing both reached new high levels since the start of the pandemic. The non-store retailing sector is at a historically high level, with the benefit of continued trade for many online stores while social distancing measures were in place.
The amount of money spent online has increased at a fast pace since before lockdown, increasing by 61.9% in June 2020 when compared with February 2020.
Average weekly spending for online retailing has increased for all main stores. Feedback from non-food stores retailers had suggested that lockdown measures had encouraged them to diversify and trade online during lockdown.
23 July 2020
Higher-paying jobs have most potential for homeworking
Analysis of the jobs that might more easily adapt to remote working has shown that employees in higher-paying jobs are more likely to be able to work from home.
Chief executives and senior officials, whose median hourly earnings are £44.08, are among those most able to work remotely, as are financial managers and directors (£31.38) and programmers and software development professionals (£21.97).
In contrast, gardeners, whose median hourly earnings are £10.27, are very unlikely to be able to work from home, as are carpenters and joiners (£13.18) and elementary construction occupations like labourers (£10.25).
Jobs that earn higher hourly wages are more likely to be adaptable to working from home
The analysis used data from a US jobs survey to identify the main characteristics associated with not being able to work remotely, which included the amount of face-to-face interaction required in the role, and the use of specialist tools and equipment.
The jobs least likely to be able to be carried out from home are mostly done by men. When looking at the fifth of workers in jobs least likely to be able to work from home, 75% are men. Men make up 48% of the whole workforce.
Workers least likely to be able to work from home are mostly men
21 July 2020
Public sector borrowing
Today’s public sector finance figures reflect the ongoing unprecedented impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown and the government’s support for individuals and businesses.
Provisional estimates indicate borrowing in the first quarter of the current financial year (April to June 2020) reached £127.9 billion, more than double the £55.4 billion borrowed in the whole of the last full financial year (April 2019 to March 2020).
Borrowing in June 2020 was provisionally estimated to be £35.5 billion, roughly five times that of June 2019 but around £10 billion less than market expectation.
Tax receipts and National Insurance contributions (on a national accounts basis) were down by 20% on June 2019, while central government spending increased by 25% over the same period.
Borrowing estimates are subject to greater than usual uncertainty because of their partial reliance on forecast data, with May 2020 being revised down by £9.8 billion to £45.5 billion, largely as a result of stronger than previously estimated tax receipts and National Insurance contributions.
The need for the extra funding required to support the government’s coronavirus relief schemes combined with a fall in gross domestic product (GDP) pushed debt at the end of June 2020 to 99.6% of GDP.
Estimates of GDP used to create this ratio are partly based on provisional data and official estimates and are subject to greater than usual uncertainty. Since our previous publication (19 June 2020), our GDP estimates have increased, reflecting the latest published data and leading to the debt ratio at the end of May 2020 falling from 100.9% to 96.9%.
Today’s data highlight the emerging fiscal impact of the coronavirus crisis but will be prone to material future revisions, and it will take many months before the true scale of the shock becomes clear.
16 July 2020
Business and social indicators show parts of the economy opening up
Our latest indicators of the business impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, for the period 15 to 28 June, suggest that the economy is continuing to open up (with safety measures).
However, nearly half of businesses (48%) in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector were temporarily closed and did not intend to restart trading in the next two weeks. This is by far the highest of any industry (accommodation and food services is next at 22%).
The construction sector saw the largest proportion of staff returning from furlough in the last two weeks, at more than one-fifth of the workforce (21%).
Further measures, gathered from our rapid response surveys, suggest that people are beginning to resume non-essential shopping. As lockdown restrictions continued to ease, the number of adults shopping in person for things other than basic necessities increased to 19% from 13% between 8 and 12 July, according to the latest Opinions and Lifestyle Survey.
Using figures from Springboard, a provider of data on customer activity, high street footfall remained relatively flat between 6 and 12 July 2020, though the seven-day average was the highest reported since 20 March 2020 (just under 60% of the footfall level the same day a year ago).
16 July 2020
UK labour market
Our latest figures on the UK labour market have now been published.
Early indicators for June 2020 suggest that the number of employees in the UK on payrolls is down around 650,000 compared with March 2020. The largest falls were seen at the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and while the number of payroll employees is still falling, the decline is slowing. Flows analysis suggests that the falls in May and June were mainly because of fewer people entering the labour market.
The headline indicators of employment and unemployment are largely unchanged, but there are some signs of inactivity rising, with people out of work not currently looking for work.
There is still a large number of people temporarily away from work, including furloughed workers, although this was falling through May. New analysis shows that there was around 450,000 people away from work because of the coronavirus pandemic and receiving no pay.
Between March to May 2019 and March to May 2020, total actual weekly hours worked in the UK decreased by 175.3 million, or 16.7%, to 877.1 million hours. This was the largest annual decrease since estimates began in 1971, with total hours dropping to its lowest level since May to July 1997.
Pay fell for most measures in April 2020, declining more in industries where furloughing was most prominent, many of these being the lowest-paying industries, in particular accommodation and food service activities.
Vacancies in the UK in April to June 2020 were at the lowest level since the survey began in April to June 2001, at an estimated 333,000.
The Claimant Count, an Experimental Statistic, fell slightly in June 2020, reaching 2.6 million. This is still an increase of 1.4 million compared with March 2020.
14 July 2020
GDP, March to May 2020
UK gross domestic product (GDP) fell by 19.1% in the three months to May 2020, as government restrictions on movement dramatically reduced economic activity. Today’s GDP monthly estimate release captures the direct effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic across the economy.
All the headline sectors provided a negative contribution to GDP growth in the three months to May 2020. The services sector fell by 18.9%, production by 15.5% and construction by 29.8%.
There have been large falls in the three months to April 2020, and the three months to May 2020, when compared to quarterly growth rates
UK GDP growth, Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2005 until March to May 2020
Monthly GDP grew by 1.8% in May 2020 but was still well below the levels seen in February 2020. The level of output had not recovered from the record falls seen in March and April 2020, and the change in GDP from February to May 2020 was negative 24.5%.
14 July 2020
Services, production and construction
The economy has experienced a significant shock since the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The Index of Services, Index of Production and construction output all remained well below their February 2020 levels in May 2020.
A detailed analysis of the impact on the output of businesses has been published in Coronavirus and the impact on output in the UK economy: May 2020.
The output of services industries remained 24.4% below the level of February 2020, growing only by 0.9% in May. The production industries remained 19.1% below their February 2020 level, even after growth of 6.0% in May.
Services industries that are linked to retail activity had a boost in May 2020, particularly from online sales. Many other services industries contracted in May 2020, citing a lack of demand from their business customers, following the earlier impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Some of the industries in production and services saw a small rise in May 2020, but most remained substantially below their February 2020 level
Index for various industries, seasonally adjusted, UK, January 2018 to May 2020
Construction output grew by a record 8.2% in the month-on-month all work series in May 2020 following the record decline of 40.2% in April 2020; the level of construction output was down 38.8% on February 2020 before the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Total housing work drove much of the fall from February, but housebuilders began to return to construction sites during May, while operating according to social distancing measures.
14 July 2020
Falls in imports and exports in the three months to May 2020 are detailed in today’s UK trade publication. This includes falls in both trade in goods and trade in services.
This release covers UK trade data for March to May 2020, during which the UK, as well as many of its major trading partners, introduced lockdown measures to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19).
The total trade balance, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, decreased by £5.2 billion to a deficit of £1.7 billion in the three months to May 2020. Exports fell £47.7 billion to £120.4 billion, while imports fell by £42.6 billion to £122.1 billion.
13 July 2020
Covering a sudden loss of household income
We have published analysis of households’ ability to cope with a sudden fall in employment income for a period of up to three months – a situation faced by many households during the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown.
The analysis is based on responses to our Wealth and Assets Survey between April 2016 and March 2018. In each case, the income loss is compared with financial assets (such as savings) held but does not consider any counteracting income support from the government. The analysis includes households in Great Britain where the household head is employed (or self-employed).
By industry, households where the head works in accommodation and food services, largely shut down since the end of March (67% of workforce furloughed), are least equipped to cope with a loss of income.
In this industry, just over a quarter of households (28%) had insufficient financial assets (such as savings) to cover a 20% drop in employment income for a single month. This rises to 39% if the drop was sustained for two months and 41% for a three-month period (the lockdown period to date).
Households where the head is employed in industries with lower rates of furloughing, such as IT and professional services, are more likely to be able to cover a drop in employment income.
Households where the head works in accommodation and food services are least likely to be able to cover a loss of income
Percentage of households unable to cover a three-month loss of employment income, by industry in which household head works, Great Britain, April 2016 to March 2018
Renting households are less likely than homeowners to have enough savings to cope with a fall in employment income. By region, renting households in the North East appear to be most vulnerable financially – 42% would be unable to cover a 20% loss of income for one month, rising to 65% (almost two-thirds) if the loss were sustained for three months.
Meanwhile, by household type, single parents of dependent children are least likely to be able to cover a loss of income. Considering employees only, 50% of lone parent households with dependent children would be unable to cover three months with 20% less employment income.
In line with our previous analysis, households of all types (children or no children) are generally more resilient to an income shock if the head of household is self-employed. There is evidence that self-employed households have higher formal financial wealth, on average, than employee households; the median value of household formal financial assets for self-employed-led households is £12,000, compared with £8,200 for employee-led households (WAS, April 2016 to March 2018).
9 July 2020
Homeworking in April 2020
Nearly half (46.6%) of people aged over 16 in employment in the UK did some work from home in April 2020, with 86.0% of those who worked from home doing so because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Women were slightly more likely to work from home than men, and workers aged 25 to 34 years were most likely to work from home at 54.3%. Regionally, workers living in London were most likely to work from home at 57.2%.
Data from 2019 (before the pandemic) showed that less than 30% of the workforce had ever worked from home in their current job, although these figures are taken from a different source so are not directly comparable.
The April figures are the first experimental statistics from our new online Labour Market Survey (LMS) launched at the end of March 2020, a survey of around 18,000 households per quarter.
The LMS is designed to collect similar data to our Labour Force Survey (LFS), but mainly online rather than over the phone or face-to-face interviews. The LFS remains the official source of our headline labour market statistics.
8 July 2020
Labour market, businesses and trade
The latest Economic review includes three articles analysing the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on the labour market, businesses and trade.
Early insights of how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic impacted the labour market provides additional analysis on the labour market figures to what was covered in the Labour market overview for June 2020.
The ratio of unemployment to vacancies increased between January and April 2020, indicating growing imbalance between labour supply and labour demand; the increase was driven more by falling demand for labour than by increasing supply.
Business closures and restrictions to non-essential travel caused labour demand to fall, with a large decrease to the number of vacancies.
Insights of the Business Impact of Coronavirus Survey: Wave 2 to Wave 7 provides insights to show how businesses and the economy have evolved so far in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Fewer businesses are reporting lower-than-normal levels of turnover in the latest fortnightly wave than at the height of restrictions in place in April and May. More businesses have reported a pickup in turnover levels in the most recent two-week period, 1 June to 14 June 2020.
The proportion of businesses’ workforce size that has been furloughed has remained fairly stable, with a slight drop in the most recent fortnight.
Impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on UK trade provides additional analysis on the figures for UK trade: April 2020 of both goods and services, which saw notable falls in both exports and imports in the three months to April 2020.
The largest impacts to exporting and importing of businesses were seen in transportation and storage, retail and wholesale, and manufacturing industries, with the biggest challenges faced by businesses being coronavirus-related transport restrictions and increased transportation costs.
7 July 2020
In Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020, the UK’s headline measure of labour productivity, output per hour, fell by 0.6% compared with the same quarter a year ago. However, output per worker fell by 3.1% over the same period, reflecting the impact of “furlough” schemes that significantly reduced the number of hours worked, while the number of workers in the economy remained more stable.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has forced employers and staff to adjust to new working schedules and arrangements, such as working from home, which can affect productivity in different ways.
While output per hour and output per worker are usually closely aligned, we found the government’s furlough scheme has caused employment to stay in line with pre-pandemic levels, whereas hours worked has fallen.
Meanwhile, another measure of productivity, multi-factor productivity, is estimated to have decreased by 2.6% compared with the same quarter a year ago, the lowest growth rate in 11 years. Multi-factor productivity is a measure that takes into account changes to equipment like machinery and software, as well as changes in the characteristics of the labour market. It does not cover the public sector.
While these productivity figures only cover the first week or so of lockdown measures being introduced, we expect further impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on labour market productivity to be revealed in data for the following quarter.
3 July 2020
Impact on financial accounts
The early assessment of the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on the UK’s financial accounts article focuses on the balance sheet of the financial account in Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020.
Most of the early impacts of the pandemic can be seen in the financial accounts balance sheets, which detail the estimated market value of institutional sectors’ financial assets and liabilities. Balance sheets are largely affected by transactions and price changes.
Increased investor concerns of the coronavirus pandemic led to increased market volatility, and this was the main driver in all sectors’ steep, unprecedented falls in the value of listed shares in their balance sheets. This was the biggest fall since records began in 1987.
Private non-financial corporations (PNFCs) were vulnerable to falling share prices because they comprise of sectors that were most negatively impacted by lockdown restrictions in the UK and overseas, such as airlines, leisure and hotels. The substantial change in the market value of shares is almost entirely because of price changes that knocked £401 billion off the worth of PNFCs’ listed shares.
In Quarter 1 2020, the impact of the pandemic has been different to other financial crises in the sense that there has been a reduction in both supply and demand.
2 July 2020
Household spending in the UK decreased between Quarter 4 (Oct to Dec) 2019 and Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020. The growth of negative 2.9%, when adjusted for inflation, was the largest fall since Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 1979.
The consumer trends publication provides household final consumption expenditure information for the UK, a measure of economic growth. These estimates are subject to more uncertainty than usual because of the challenges faced in collecting the data during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The suspension of data collection for the Living Costs and Food Survey (LCF) and International Passenger Survey (IPS) on 16 March impacted two important data sources for these figures.
The largest negative contribution to the decline in household spending came from expenditure on Transport, including motor vehicles. There were also falls for Restaurants and hotels and Clothing and footwear. There was, however, an increase of spending on Food and non-alcoholic beverages.
30 June 2020
GDP, January to March 2020
UK gross domestic product (GDP) in volume terms fell by 2.2% in Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020, revised downwards by 0.2 percentage points from the first quarterly estimate; this is now the joint largest fall in UK GDP since Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 1979.
The GDP quarterly national accounts release captures the first direct effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The contraction in GDP reflects the imposing of public health restrictions and voluntary social distancing put in place in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The services, production and construction sectors provided a negative contribution to growth in the output approach to GDP in Quarter 1 2020, with services output falling by a record 2.3% in the latest quarter.
The expenditure approach to GDP captured falls in both private consumption and government consumption, alongside a net trade deficit. The decline in government consumption in Quarter 1 2020 reflects falls in health and education expenditure. The initial impact of the coronavirus on government healthcare consumption was mixed, with increased activity in some areas (calls to NHS 111) and reduced activity in other areas (elective operations and accident and emergency).
The Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT) shows that a greater stringency of lockdown is associated with lower GDP growth in Quarter 1 2020. When compared internationally, it implies that the size of the contraction in the UK economy in Quarter 1 2020 was broadly in line with what might have been expected, given the policies that were in place in the UK in Quarter 1 2020.
Greater stringency of lockdowns is associated with lower GDP growth in Quarter 1 2020
Selection of countries, Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020
30 June 2020
Investment, saving and borrowing
The impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has brought major changes to the financial account in the UK’s Institutional sector accounts in the first quarter (Jan to Mar) of 2020.
A great deal of volatility was observed in individual financial instruments on the balance sheet of the financial account.
UK monetary financial institutions (MFIs) saw record increases in deposits placed with them on the quarter of £819.6 billion as investors switched to safer investments. In part, these deposits have been funded by the issuance of new loans by MFIs. They recorded their highest rise ever in short-term loans of £304.8 billion. This provides evidence of a “dash for cash”.
In the non-financial accounts, UK net borrowing from the rest of the world increased. General government saw an increase in its net borrowing position to negative 4.4% of gross domestic product (GDP). The increase in borrowing was the largest since Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 2013 and was particularly driven by the introduction of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) late in the quarter.
A fall in private non-financial corporations’ gross operating surplus of £5 billion was seen in Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020 as a fall in profits was seen across almost all industries.
30 June 2020
Imports and exports
In Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020, total trade exports (£159.5 billion) decreased to their lowest levels since Quarter 1 2018 and imports (£160.7 billion) decreased to their lowest level since Quarter 4 (Oct to Dec) 2016 as the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic took hold and countries introduced lockdowns.
Balance of payments, UK: January to March 2020 presents a measure of cross-border transactions between the UK and rest of the world.
There is evidence of the coronavirus starting to impact on global supply chains in Quarter 1 2020, with many businesses reporting notable falls in trade in goods during March 2020. Trade in manufactured goods was significantly impacted, with declines for both imports and exports.
There were also large decreases for imports and exports of the trade in travel services, as governments around the world introduced travel bans to stem the spread of the coronavirus.
The primary income balance deficit – which records income the UK receives and pays on financial and other assets, along with compensation of employees – widened by £2.4 billion to £13.6 billion in Quarter 1 2020. There was a larger fall in UK earnings on foreign investments (credits) than the fall in payments to foreign investors on their UK investments (debits), as other countries entered lockdowns earlier and businesses aimed to maintain cash buffers by reducing or cancelling dividend payments.
The trade and primary income figures both affect the UK’s current account balance. The UK current account deficit widened to £21.1 billion in Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020, or 3.8% of gross domestic product (GDP). This was also affected by erratic movements in the trading of precious metals, especially non-monetary gold, in the final quarter of 2019 and more subdued trading in Quarter 1 2020.
24 June 2020
Furloughing of workers across UK businesses
According to the latest Business Impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) Survey (BICS) which covers 18 to 31 May 2020, 30% of the workforce had been furloughed across the businesses that had responded and had not permanently stopped trading. This corresponds to 23% of the workforce in businesses that were continuing to trade and 85% of the workforce in businesses that have temporarily closed or paused trading.
Of businesses that temporarily paused trading, 60% furloughed more than 90% of their workforce, while only 3% of businesses that continued trading furloughed the same proportion of their workforce.
One in five businesses that continued to trade did not furlough any employees
Proportion of businesses, by proportion of the workforce that had been furloughed (ranges) and trading status, for responding businesses that have not permanently stopped trading, UK, 18 May to 31 May 2020
Our data show that, of businesses that reported continuing to trade, 5% of the workforce had returned from furlough, while 2% had returned from remote working to the normal workplace between 18 and 31 May 2020.
Of those businesses that had not permanently stopped trading, 81% reported they had applied for the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). Looking only at businesses that have furloughed a proportion of their workforce, this percentage increases to 97% of currently trading businesses, and 98% of temporarily paused businesses. Just over half of these businesses reported that they are not topping up employee wages.
Rates of furloughing varied widely across industries, particularly for those businesses continuing to trade
Proportion of the workforce that had been furloughed, by industry and trading status of the employing business, for responding businesses that have not permanently stopped trading, UK, 18 May to 31 May 2020
The rate of furloughing was higher across businesses facing temporary closures with the highest proportion of the workforce being furloughed in the Accommodation and food service activities industry.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has also published estimates on coronavirus (COVID-19) statistics, looking at data on the CJRS, the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), and the Value Added Tax (VAT) Payments Deferral Scheme. Any comparisons with HMRC and BICS estimates should be treated with caution.