Covid 19 - Economies of Ale

08 Jun

Today 'Economies of ale: pubs in the time of COVID-19' was published by the Office of National Statistics which provides an analysis of the impact of Covid 19 and the restrictions on pubs.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) used the results of the Business Insights and Conditions Survey (BICS) from October 2020 and provides a link to the data from which is was compiled. The report confirms it is limited and expresses caution in that when interpreting the results for pubs and bars because of a small sample size, sample variation and possible drop off because of some of the pubs closing down.

It confirms what the industry has known for some time that furlough has been the lifeline for many operators but the actual comparison figures to the rest of the economic work force really stand out:

“At its peak in the November 2020 lockdown, 91% of pub and bar staff were on furlough. This number has now decreased to 55%.

This compares with overall 8% to 15% of staff on furlough in all other businesses during the same period, indicating the heavier reliance of pubs and bars on the scheme.”

Further that the easing of restrictions have been such that full work forces are still not in place, the report states:

“ We can increasingly see a downward trend of pub and bar staff on furlough since restrictions were lifted on beer gardens. Despite this, the percentage of staff that were on furlough has remained high. This suggests that where pubs and bars have been open, they have been operating with minimal staff.”

Interesting data which we are sure will be used to hold those in office to account and to show how there will not be an overnight return to normality in the economies of pubs even if the 21st June easing takes placed as initially planned.

Law correct at the date of publication.
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