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Number of furloughed workers hits 9.4 million

Written by: Emma Lunn
A total of 9.4 million jobs have been furloughed at a cost of £27.4bn, according to Government statistics.

As of Sunday 5 July, 9.4 million workers have been furloughed by 1.1 million employers. In total, the value of claims under the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) stands at £27.4bn.

This is up from 9.3 million furloughed workers reported a week ago with employers claiming a total of £25.5bn to cover staff wages. The Government releases weekly furlough figures every Tuesday.

The deadline for new applications to the scheme closed a week ago. Only employees who were furloughed for a minimum of three weeks on or before 30 June 2020 are eligible for the second part of the scheme which started on 1 July and runs until the end of October.

Businesses can now bring furloughed employees back part-time.

Support for the self-employed

Meanwhile, claims made by self-employed workers who are struggling during the pandemic have hit 2.7 million.

However, the total value of claims made under the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, which launched in May, has remained at £7.7bn for the second week in a row.

A “second and final” grant will be available for self-employed workers from August.

This second grant will be payable at a level equivalent to 70% of the taxpayer’s annual average profits, capped at £2,190 per month, so the maximum amount payable will be £6,570 to cover three months.

Support for businesses

Separate figures from the Treasury show that nearly £45bn has been given in loans to struggling businesses.

Under the Bounce Back Loan Scheme, more than 1,013,410 businesses have received £30.93bn in loans. As of 5 July, 1.24 million applications for the scheme had been submitted.

As part of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, £11.49bn has been approved to help more than 53,500 businesses, with more than 107,000 applications having been made under the scheme.

Turning to the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Treasury statistics revealed £2.58bn of loans have been approved for 394 businesses, with 783 applications having been received.

Stephen Pegge, managing director of commercial finance at UK Finance, says: “Just over two months since it was launched, the Bounce Back Loan scheme has now backed over one million businesses with £30.9bn worth of lending. Across all the Covid-19 schemes, £45bn has now gone towards supporting businesses thanks to the tireless efforts of staff working on the ground.

“Today’s figures represent part of an unparalleled package of support from the industry which includes commercial lending, capital repayment holidays, extended overdrafts and asset-based finance.

“It’s important to remember that any lending provided under government-backed schemes is a debt not a grant, and so firms should carefully consider their ability to repay before applying.”

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