Job cuts forecast as UK furlough program poised to end next month

The British government has been urged by industry and union leaders to launch a new wage subsidy program to avoid a surge of unemployment as companies prepare for the current furlough business support arrangement to come to an end next month. The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, in place since the nation’s lockdown due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, is gradually being scaled back and will soon be closed down entirely. In an interview with the Financial Times, the boss of the Confederation of British Industry, or CBI, Carolyn Fairbairn, urged ministers to extend business support measures ahead of the autumn budget, warning that a rush of redundancies were expected as soon as the middle of this month. Fairbairn said: “The autumn is a watershed time. If we can grab that V-shaped recovery now with the right actions over the next two to three months, we have the opportunity heading into the new year feeling much more confident about the UK.” According to The Bank of England, as many as 2.5 million people could lose their jobs by the end of 2020 as the furlough program is brought to an end. Fairbairn said the program, which at its peak in… Read full this story

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