The UK-based financial and related professional services industry rebounded strongly last year despite the ongoing challenges following the global pandemic, according to the latest annual ‘UK Key Facts’ report from TheCityUK.
The industry’s economic output (GVA) showed year-on-year growth of 8% in 2021 following a contraction of 0.6% in 2020. Total industry output in 2021 reached £261bn, up by £19bn year-on-year, accounting for 12% of total UK economic output, up from 10% in 2020.
Industry employment also remained relatively resilient throughout the pandemic. Despite a 0.5% fall in employment in 2020 (the latest data available), over 2.2 million people – around one in every 14 UK jobs – are employed in financial and related professional services in high-skill, high-value jobs, with two-thirds of workers based outside London, in towns and cities right across the UK.
The financial services sector remains one of the most productive in the UK economy, with the productivity of the sector more than twice as high as whole-economy productivity in terms of output per hour. Output per hour for the financial services sector was £83.30 in 2020, compared with whole-economy productivity of £39.
Amid the fanfare that greeted the bullish economic projections published last week in the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Report, one detail of monetary policy received relatively little attention.