SMEs expecting spike in redundancies as lockdown eases

Small businesses in the UK are predicting redundancies will spike in August as lockdown starts to ease, according to a survey by software giant Sage.

Its poll of over 5,000 SMEs found that 60% of firms are considering redundancies; while the government’s job retention scheme has been heralded as crucial to supporting small firms through the pandemic, employers will soon be asked to contribute towards costs, which will likely lead to job cuts.

The Sage report also found that 61% of firms are operating at a loss, and 68% are experiencing a more than 25% fall in sales.

For the hospitality and retail industries there has been little change in outlook since the start of lockdown. Even by late May, the hospitality sector maintained expectations of a minus 75% hit to revenues.

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