Issue date
17 Apr 2012

date: 16 April 2012

embargo: 00.01hrs Tuesday 17 April 2012

The manufacturing and construction sectors have suffered the biggest loss of jobs since the eve of the recession, while finance and business services is the only sector with a bigger workforce today, according to a TUC analysis published today (Tuesday) ahead of a busy week of economic indicators.

The TUC analysis looks at industries including construction, manufacturing, retail, hotels and restaurants, and the finance and business services sector.

The analysis finds that the types of jobs that account for over half of all youth employment - manufacturing, construction and retail, hotels and restaurants - have shed nearly a million jobs since 2007.

The number of manufacturing jobs fell by 14 per cent between the last quarter of 2007 and the last quarter of 2011, a loss of 406,000 jobs. The construction sector had the next biggest fall losing 281,000 jobs (12 per cent of all construction jobs).

The retail, hotel and restaurants industry has lost 221,000 jobs since the end of 2007, a fall of three per cent. Four in ten young workers are employed in this sector, compared to just one in six workers over the age of 25.

Finance and business services is the only sector to have expanded since 2007, gaining 98,000 jobs (up two per cent) over the last four years.

The relative health of finance and business services has helped to boost pay for workers in this industry. Wages have increased by 11.3 per cent since 2007, compared to an increase of just 0.2 per cent in construction and 6.7 per cent in retail, hotel and restaurants.

However, with RPI inflation increasing by 13.5 per cent over the same period, the wages of all workers have fallen in real terms.

The TUC analysis comes ahead of the latest inflation figures published later this morning, as well as pay and jobs figures published tomorrow.

Independent market forecasters are predicting a small rise in CPI inflation and a further fall in wage growth, which would mean that prices have been rising nearly three times as fast as wages in recent months.

And with the Office for Budget Responsibility now forecasting that wages will continue to fall in real terms until mid-2013, three years on from when wages last rose, the outlook is looking tough for both job seekers and those already in work.

While those earning over £150,000 can look forward to a tax cut as a result of last month's Budget, families on low and middle incomes are being stung by the combination of tax credit cuts, low wage growth and tough competition for the few jobs out there, says the TUC.

The TUC wants the government to make investment in jobs its top priority by introducing a guarantee of a paid job or training for any young person out of work for six months or more, and giving more incentives for businesses to invest rather than sit on their record cash piles.

Most of all, says the TUC, the Chancellor should heed the growing economic warning signs and end his self-defeating austerity strategy that is stifling the UK's economic prospects, putting people out of work and failing to bring the deficit down.

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: 'The manufacturing sector experienced heavy job losses during the recession and has failed to recover during the UK's admittedly weak recovery. While the retail and construction sectors have gained jobs in the last 12 months, they are still a long way off their pre-recession health.

'A recovery in retail, hotels and restaurants is particularly important for young people as this is where they are most likely to find work. Unfortunately these jobs are heavily dependent on people's disposable incomes and falling wages are forcing people to rein in their spending.

'The UK economy desperately needs more jobs and the return of decent pay rises. Our hopes of a sustainable economic recovery depend on this.

'The government should make jobs and fair pay its top priority, rather than carrying on with its ill-advised austerity plan that's making a tough economic climate even worse.

'Ministers can start by introducing a guarantee of paid work or training for every young person who has been out of work for six months or more, as well as a new youth credit to boost access to training, work placements or progression into better jobs. This would go some way what towards redressing the harsh cuts in EMA and jobs support that young people have suffered under this government.'

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Workforce jobs by industrial sector, 2007-2011

Manufacturing (000s)

Construction (000s)

Retail, hotels and restaurants (000s)

Finance and business services (000s)

2007 Q4

2920

2336

7046

6395

2008 Q4

2684

2347

6959

6390

2009 Q4

2609

2176

6683

6231

2010 Q4

2551

2038

6686

6291

2011 Q4

2514

2055

6825

6493

Change, 2007 Q4-2011 Q4

-406

-281

-221

98

Change (per cent), 2007 Q4-2011 Q4

-14%

-12%

-3%

2%

Source: Labour Force Survey (LFS)

Monthly earning data by industrial sector, 2007-2011

Manufacturing

Construction

Retail, hotels and restaurants

Finance and business services

2007 Q4

487

538

283

547

2008 Q4

499

535

286

566

2009 Q4

510

542

292

571

2010 Q4

524

526

296

589

2011 Q4

532

539

302

609

Change (£'s), 2007Q4-2011 Q4

45

1

19

62

Change (per cent), 2007 Q4-2011 Q4

9.2%

0.2%

6.7%

11.3%

Source: Monthly wages and salaries survey

Number of workers by industrial sector and age group

Industry

Under 25 years of age

25 years of age and over

Agriculture, forestry and fishing

26,014

0.7%

314,359

1.2%

Energy and water

40,654

1.1%

481,526

1.9%

Manufacturing

239,137

6.7%

2,613,238

10.3%

Construction

258,855

7.3%

1,893,686

7.5%

Distribution, hotels and restaurants*

1,472,496

41.2%

4,029,271

15.9%

Transport and communication

173,064

4.8%

2,322,021

9.2%

Banking and finance

469,181

13.1%

4,251,042

16.8%

Public admin, education and health

591,467

16.6%

8,120,771

32.1%

Other services

299,094

8.4%

1,298,800

5.1%

Total

3,569,962

100.0%

25,324,714

100.0%

Source: LFS

* The longer definition of 'distribution, hotels and restaurants' is 'wholesale, retail, the motor trade or hotels and restaurants', as used in earlier tables.

- The full background data for the TUC analysis is available from the press office.

- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk

Contacts:

Media enquiries:
Liz Chinchen T: 020 7467 1248 M: 07778 158175 E: [email protected]
Rob Holdsworth T: 020 7467 1372 M: 07717 531150 E: [email protected]
Elly Gibson T: 020 7467 1337 M: 07900 910624 E: [email protected]