Government must hold inquiry into causes of recession, says TUC

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date: 23 January 2009

embargo: For immediate release

Commenting on official statistics which show that gross domestic product fell for the second consecutive quarter - the widely accepted definition of a recession - in the last quarter of 2008, TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said:

'This recession is not bad luck or an inevitable swing of the pendulum.

'Its cause is irresponsible behaviour by banks and financial institutions taking advantage of the deregulation started by Mrs Thatcher and President Reagan, and continued to a greater or lesser extent ever since.

'Government must strain every sinew to make it as short and shallow as possible, but it must also set up a tough public inquiry into what went wrong and why.'


- The TUC has produced two leaflets to help working people in the recession, Coping with the Economic Downturn (produced with input from Citizens Advice) and Facing Redundancy. Both leaflets can be downloaded for free from - the TUC's world of work website - which contains questions and answers on all aspects of redundancy. In addition, the TUC's Know Your Rights Line on 0870 600 4882 (national rate, daily 8am-10pm) offers information to callers on a wide range of workplace issues including redundancy.

- All TUC press releases can be found at

- Register for the TUC's press extranet: a service exclusive to journalists wanting to access pre-embargo releases and reports from the TUC. Visit


Media enquiries:
Liz Chinchen T: 020 7467 1248 M: 07778 158175 E: [email protected]
Elly Brenchley T: 020 7467 1337 M: 07900 910624 E: [email protected]

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