Youngsters bear the brunt in London but all age groups suffer as ‘second wave’ of Covid job losses sweeps across the country

London, Wales and the North East of the UK were hit hardest by the ‘second wave’ of Covid job losses, according to analysis of ONS data from work tech company Orka.

According to the latest data released this month, the number of people in paid jobs in the capital during the period of June to August was approximately 4,813,000 – a 38,000 decrease on the figure ONS disclosed for May to July. The more recent spate of job losses recorded in London has impacted young people the most, with 19,000 fewer 16-24-year-olds in jobs than there were during May and July.

Meanwhile in Wales and the North East, the number of people in jobs fell by 21,000 over the same period. In contrast to London, in Wales 25-49-year-olds have been hit hardest by recent job losses, with 23,000 fewer people in this age category in jobs compared to data for May-July. In the North East on the other hand, 13,000 jobs have been lost in the 50-64-year-old age group.

Table showing number of people in employment across the UK

UK region/countryTotal people in employment (May-July)Total people in employment (June-August)Difference
North East1.228 million1.207 million-21,000
North West3.495 million3.508 million13,000
Yorkshire and The Humber2.586million2.591 million5,000
East Midlands2.336 million2.327 million-9,000
West Midlands2.793 million2.793 million0
East3.085 million3.079 million-6,000
London4.851 million4.813 million-38,000
South East4.628 million4.614 million-14,000
South West2.719 million2.715 million-4,000
Wales1.473 million1.452 million-21,000
Scotland2.615 million2.635 million20,000
Northern Ireland855,000857,0002,000

Commenting on the data, Tom Pickersgill, CEO and co-founder of Orka, said: “Almost a million people have lost their jobs since the start of the pandemic and, given the latest lockdown measures, this number could climb again in the coming months. While this is a terrible situation for so many to be in, the picture of the job market isn’t completely black and white and there are some opportunities out there.”

“Permanent 9-5-style roles are going to take time to recover to pre-Covid levels, but we’re also going to see a spike in temporary job opportunities as businesses favour flexibility in their approach to hiring. We can see this is already starting to happen, particularly in industries such as security, logistics and cleaning. For anyone looking for work, these temporary roles should still offer the benefits and protections of traditional full-time employment and are therefore worth considering.”

[1] ONS Estimates of employment by age

Author: Editorial Team

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