- UK’s COVID-19 furlough programme to stop on Sept. 30
- Over a million UK workers still receiving support
- BoE and economists split on outlook for unemployment
- Employers report record job vacancies and skills shortages
LONDON, Sept 28 (Reuters) – More than a million British workers face an uncertain future this week as the UK becomes the world’s first big economy to wind up its COVID-19 jobs support scheme.
The programme, which at its peak paid a third of employees to stay at home, cost more than 68 billion pounds ($93 billion) – the most expensive single piece of UK economic support during the pandemic.
It also marked a sharp shift in policy in Britain where unemployment benefits are low by European standards.
“I think it’s been an absolute lifesaver … and was exactly what the government needed to put in,” said Sabby Gill, chief executive of human resources software firm Thomas International, which furloughed staff until the start of this…