Questions and answers about coronavirus and the UK economy

Questions and answers about coronavirus and the UK economy

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Regaining balance

As restrictions ease and many businesses across the UK welcome customers back through their doors, there is hope that the economic recovery is beginning. But jobs and our communities may take longer to bounce back.

Recession & recovery

How has coronavirus affected social capital in the UK?

Social capital – a measure of the strength of our communities and society as a whole – has been declining in the UK in recent years. Rebuilding these bonds will be vital to meet the challenges of inequality, climate change and recovery from the crisis.

Data stories

A year in the UK labour market: what’s happened over the coronavirus pandemic?

Past recessions saw steep rises in unemployment or wage cuts. Tracking the performance of the UK labour market during Covid-19 shows that the most notable effects of a downturn caused by restrictions on mobility are the more dynamic aspects: falls in hours, hiring, job quits and house moves.

Jobs, work, pay & benefits

How might Uber drivers’ new status as workers affect the gig economy?

The Supreme Court has ruled that the tens of thousands of Uber drivers in the UK should be treated as workers rather than as being self-employed. The decision may force the company and other platform-based services to make big changes in how they operate.


Economic evolution: fast and slow

Economics is evolving, with researchers developing new ideas and tools for the modern world. Economies themselves are harder to shift, as a piece on pay in Britain shows. At the Observatory we are changing too, with lots of new projects and events to tell you about in this week’s letter.

Jobs, work, pay & benefits

Ethnic minorities and the UK labour market: are things getting better?

Comparison of disparities in pay, employment and unemployment among different ethnic groups in the UK shows that there has been little change over the past 25 years. Indeed, for black, Pakistani and Bangladeshi men and women, pay gaps with white men and women have widened.

Prices & interest rates

Do we need a new constitution for central banking?

The global financial crisis, persistently weak growth and now Covid-19 have created tensions between politics and central banking. The time is ripe for a refreshed constitution, making clear the purpose of independent central banks, and what should fall to fiscal authorities.

All Answers