Press Release

Our response to the latest furlough figures, July 2021

Responding to the latest furlough figures published today, Nick Bowes, Chief Executive, Centre for London said:

“London still continues to have a disproportionate number of its workforce on furlough compared to every other region in the country, as well as the highest unemployment rate.

“While the furlough rate in the capital has fallen, there are still huge challenges for getting central London back on its feet given it is hospitality, arts and construction workers who are most likely to still be on furlough.

“What we also don’t know is how many of those who are no longer on furlough have returned to their jobs or how many might now be out of work.

“Central London’s economy is particularly delicate at the moment, and the government needs to recognise that a slower recovery for London will risk the whole country’s recovery too.”


Notes to Editors

  • Centre for London is the capital’s dedicated think tank. Our mission is to develop new solutions to London’s critical challenges and advocate for a fair and prosperous global city.

Data as of 29 July 2021

Furlough rates in London vs England as a whole:

  • The proportion of eligible ‘employments’ (read: jobs) furloughed in London as of June 30 was 9%. This compares to 7% in England.  This is a change from 11% and 8% as of May 31.

Furlough rates by sector

  • In all sectors, the proportion of jobs furloughed in June was at least as high in London than in England as a whole, and often higher. The sectors with the biggest percentage point difference in the proportion of workers furloughed in London vs England as a whole are: (1) construction (18% in London v 10% in England as a whole, (2) accommodation and food services (26% in London v 19% in England as a whole), (3) manufacturing (12% in London v 8% in England as a whole).
  • The sectors with the highest number of individuals furloughed were the same in London and England as a whole: (1) accommodation and food services, (2) wholesale and retail; repair of motor vehicles, and (3) administrative and support services.
  • *‘Other service activities’, a loose category which comprises membership organisations, repair of household goods, and personal services such as hairdressing, had a furlough rate of 20% in London in June.