(Source: BBC News)
Closing the government scheme which is paying furloughed workers' wages is a "mistake", an economic research group has said. It could push unemployment to 10% this year, the research suggests.
The latest furlough figures show 9.5 million people are using the scheme, the same as a week ago, and at a total cost of £31.7bn to the Treasury. But those figures are likely to drop quickly, says the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR).
"The planned closure of the furlough seems to be a mistake, motivated by an understandable desire to limit spending," said Garry Young, NIESR deputy director. The scheme was intended by the chancellor to be a bridge through the crisis and there is a risk that it is coming to an end prematurely. The scheme has been an undeniable success in terms of keeping furloughed employees attached to their jobs."
The Treasury says the scheme will have protected millions of jobs for eight months when it comes to a close.
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