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Employment in the 2008–2009 recession

Listed author(s):
  • Paul Gregg

    (University of Bristol)

  • Jonathan Wadsworth

    (Royal Holloway, University of London)

SUMMARYAfter some 15 years of near continuous job growth, the employment rate in the UK in 2008 stood at around 75 per cent of the working age population, a level which was broadly in line with previous employment peaks observed in 1989, 1978 or 1968. In 2005, the (ILO-based) unemployment rate fell below 5 per cent for the first time since the 1970s. Since then, the UK has experienced the worst recession since World War 2 in terms of output lost and the full effects of this on the labour market may not have yet been felt. However the impact on the labour market so far has been rather surprising given the patterns observed both in previous recessions and the contemporaneous experience of other industrialised countries. This article aims to chart the performance of the labour market through the recession and to explain the surprising patterns that have emerged. It also tries to assess the prospects for the next few years.

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Article provided by Palgrave Macmillan & Office for National Statistics in its journal Economic & Labour Market Review.

Volume (Year): 4 (2010)
Issue (Month): 8 (August)
Pages: 37-43

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Handle: RePEc:pal:ecolmr:v:4:y:2010:i:8:p:37-43
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