UK firms cut staff levels amid covid-19 crisis as cough medicine prices spike – business live

Rolling coverage of the latest economic and financial news


11.54am BST

The drop in UK employment levels last week is a very bad sign — with further job cuts inevitable as the coronavirus crisis deepens.

So says Nye Cominetti, Senior Economist at the Resolution Foundation:

“The coronavirus-induced lockdown is having a profound impact on working families, with new ONS data showing that over a quarter of businesses have cut hours or jobs in recent weeks. This helps to explain why almost a million people have made a Universal Credit claim in the past fortnight. We have never seen this before.

“With almost half of firms saying that they have been impacted negatively by the crisis, we can expect further job losses in the near future.

27% of businesses say they have reduced staff levels in short-term
29% have decreased working hours
46% say staff have to work from home

(note: not exclusive categories)

11.24am BST

Supermarket chain Morrisons has announced its tripling its bonus for UK staff this year.

Usually staff get a 6% bonus over the next 8 to 12 weeks, but now (following the surge in demand from shoppers), all frontline workers will receive a 6% bonus on their earnings for the next 12 months.

Morrisons is paying staff a special 12-month ‘thank you bonus’ for sterling work during coronavirus outbreak. Full time staff will be entitled to £1,050 vs £350 average last year. Another retailer doing the right thing.

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