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2 November 2020 | Economy

State of the Nation: Crisis deepens for young people

State of the Nation: Crisis deepens for key sectors and young people

The social and economic crisis facing the key sectors of the Scottish economy and our young people is deepening as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, according to SCDI’s latest State of the Nation briefing for November.

By bringing together all of the latest economic data and forecasts in one place, the monthly briefings highlighted the key challenges and opportunities in the Scottish economy.

Retail and tourism & hospitality face the prospect of a long, hard winter after a difficult, disappointing autumn. Consumers are holding back non-essential spending. Travel is increasingly restricted in many local authority areas. Much of the summer momentum of Scotland’s fragile recovery from COVID-19 has been lost in recent weeks.

Scotland faces a looming unemployment crisis, which will disproportionately impact on young people and ethnic minorities, whose life chances risk being permanently damaged due to the scarring effects of loss of work, opportunities, skills and/or confidence.

The pandemic is a social and economic crisis as well as a public health emergency. It risks severely exacerbating existing inequalities across our communities if action is not taken to build a Green Recovery for all, with investment and support targeted at those most in need.

Key points

  • 20% of young people are now out of work. The overall jobless rate is just 4.5%.
  • Young people are significantly more likely to have been:
    • furloughed,
    • made redundant,
    • unable to find new employment.
  • 26.4% of Scotland’s workforce is working remotely, increasing the average workday by nearly 50 minutes.
  • Business activity in September was weakest in Scotland of all of the UK’s nations and regions.
  • 60% of the output originally lost from Scottish GDP has been regained.
  • Interest rates remain at record low of 0.1%.
  • Inflation rose marginally to 0.5%.

Download our latest State of the Nation briefing below for all of the latest data and forecasts in one place.