IT was announced today that despite there being 612,000 less workers on company payrolls, the UK unemployment rate remained unchanged.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) released figures today for the month of May that showed unemployment was at the same 3.9 per cent it was in April.
The news came as a surprise to economists who had predicted the figure to increase considerably as a result of the coronavirus lockdown.
But during the month of April, the UK recorded the largest decrease in job vacancies in almost 20 years.
Minister for Employment Mims Davies said today’s data shows how badly the economy has suffered due to coronavirus.
“But our furlough scheme, grants, loans and tax cuts have protected thousands of businesses and millions of jobs, setting us up for recovery,” she added.
A senior economist from Price Waterhouse Cooper (PwC) pointed out that the lack of movement in the employment data failed to take into account the 8.9 million workers on the government’s furlough scheme in May.
Separate data released today shows that this figure has increased to over nine million workers since May.