North-South divide’s evident in public sector job cuts

21st October 2011

The UK is sharply divided in terms of business confidence in the public sector, according to Begbies Traynor, the corporate restructuring firm responsible for publicising the report.

The research shows a North/South divide, where more than 19 per cent of organisations in the North-East reported significant financial distress caused by the job cuts in the public sector. Rigours in the North-West rose by 12 per cent, while Wales and the Midlands experienced a 10 per cent rise from the three previous months. These regions are known for their reliance on the public sector.

Conditions in the South-East and London appeared to be more favourable. The levels of financial distress in London fell by 6 per cent, and in the South-East the figure dropped by 3 per cent. The number of companies in Scotland reporting difficulties fell by 4%, a clear sign that the consequence of the deep public sector job cuts has yet to materialise.

The overall percentage point change in all regions was 2 per cent. The numbers released by the Office for National Statistics point to a grim state of affairs for the public sector. More than 100,000 public sector workers lost their jobs in the first two quarters of 2011. The initial estimate for the year was 20,000.

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