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Employment falls by largest amount since 2009

Employment fell by the largest amount in more than a decade between April and June 2020, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The latest statistics show there were 32.92 million people aged 16 years and over in employment during the period - 220,000 fewer than the quarter before.

This was the largest quarterly decrease since May to July 2009.

The youngest and oldest age groups were the most likely to be affected by the decrease in employment, with employment falling by 100,000 for 16 to 24-year-olds, and by a record 161,000 for those aged 65 years and over.

Meanwhile, employment numbers increased by 41,000 among those aged 25 to 64.

Steven Cameron, pensions director at Aegon, warned that lower employment among over-65s could push many into an earlier retirement than they had planned.

He said:

"In recent years we've seen an accelerating trend towards people transitioning into retirement, continuing to work after traditional retirement ages often on a part time basis.

"Unfortunately, it looks like for many, what they'd hoped would be a gradual transition has turned into a sudden departure from work.

"This shows how important it is that the Government looks at every age group and considers how best to support them as we tackle the COVID-19 crisis."

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