Cineworld

A further 58,000 planned redundancies were announced in August, taking the total to nearly 500,000 since the Covid-19 pandemic began.

Nearly 1,000 employers informed the Insolvency Service of their intention to make 20 or more people redundant.

The total figure for August was dramatically below June and July which both saw 150,000 job cuts announced.

It comes just a day after Cineworld announced it was planning to close all of its cinemas across the UK and US, putting more than 5,000 jobs at risk.

Rebecca McDonald, senior economist at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation think tank, said: “There was a sense of optimism in August, we were starting to see more spending and more activity, there were hopes for a quick recovery.

“That seems a lot less likely now.”

A government spokesperson said: “Supporting jobs is an absolute priority, which is why we have set out our plan for jobs to protect, create and support jobs across the UK.

“We are helping employees get back to work through a £1,000 retention bonus, creating new roles for young people with our £2bn Kickstart scheme and doubling the number of frontline work coaches.”

Last month, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak revealed plans for a new job support scheme that will replace the furlough scheme at the end of October. It will see the government provide limited support to employees who are working fewer hours due to decreased demand.

“Many employers will have difficult decisions to make in the coming months. Given the design of the new scheme it seems likely that there will be a significant number of redundancies in the winter,” said Ms McDonald.

“We are concerned that it will be the lowest-paid workers in the hardest-hit sectors who will be affected the most.”

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