Labour Market Statistics, January 2021: Record redundancy figures but underneath there are signs of labour market stability by the end of last year

IES News

26 Jan 2021

Comment from IES Director Tony Wilson on today's labour market statistics:

“While the record redundancy figures are likely to take the headlines today, underneath this there are signs that the labour market had stabilised by the end of last year.  The fall in employment appears to have stopped in the most recent quarter, covering September to November, with weekly data showing employment flat overall.  The rise in unemployment is mainly being driven by more of those already out of work starting to look for a new job.  The most recent quarter has also seen a slight recovery in employment for 18 to 24 year olds, which is encouraging.

“However while things have stopped getting worse, they weren’t getting much better either – with new job starts still well below pre-crisis levels and vacancies falling back again.  It’s inevitable that things will have deteriorated since January, so as we start to look ahead to the easing of restrictions in the spring we will need to do a lot more to stimulate hiring and support jobs growth.”

Full briefing note available here