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Business Briefing: Youths from poor homes more likely to be jobless

SCHOOL leavers from poorer backgrounds are twice as likely to be out of work because of a ‘youth jobs gap’ between rich and poor, a study shows.

A quarter of young people who were eligible for free school meals were not in education, employment or training (Neet) after leaving school, according to the charity Impetus. But only 13 per cent of those not eligible for free school meals ended up Neet, the report said.

Education alone cannot explain the employment gap, as youngsters from disadvantaged backgrounds still fare worse even when they achieve good qualifications, said the charity.

Young people with similar qualifications to their better-off peers are still 50 per cent more likely to be out of education and employment in early adulthood, the study said. Meanwhile, a disadvantaged young person in the north-east is 50 per cent more likely to end up Neet than a disadvantaged young person in London.

Andy Ratcliffe, chief executive of Impetus, said: ‘We are breaking a fundamental promise to young people in this country. We tell them: “Study hard, get your qualifications and good jobs will follow.” For many young people this is true, but for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds it isn’t.’

The findings, involving 18- to 24-year-old Neets in England, were drawn from Department for Education data, with help from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research.

Shadow employment minister Mike Amesbury said: ‘This report must act as a wake-up call to the government. Young people who have grown up in poverty can face significant disadvantages when they come to look for their first job.’

Mark Hawthorne, of the Local Government Association, said: ‘The government needs to consider LGA proposals for an integrated employment and skills service led by local authorities.’

Plastic ban call as bodyboards ‘pollute’ beach

Board stupid: Hundreds of broken bodyboards laid out in Bude, Cornwall PICTURE: SWNS

CAMPAIGNERS have called for a ban on £5 supermarket bodyboards after claims they are ‘polluting’ UK beaches. They say the plastic boards — mainly shipped from China — break easily, with about 16,000 a year dumped as litter.

It comes as Cornish group BeachCare collected more than 600 in just one day. In a Facebook post by Real Surfing magazine, beach users were urged to ‘boycott’ stores ‘selling this cheap s***’.

It added: ‘These boards often snap, sprinkling polystyrene balls in the sea and over the beach, or are discarded and go into landfill.’ Neil Hembrow, of Keep Britain Tidy, said there was ‘shock at the scale of the problem’ when people saw the boards laid out on Bude beach.

Fever-Tree founder will take home £4m

THE founder of Fever-Tree is set to take home a bumper pay packet after the mixer maker posted another record year. CEO Tim Warrillow will receive £3.98million for last year, up from £844,000 in 2017.

The increase is due to the introduction of a Long Term Incentive Plan, first approved in 2016. In the period since it was granted, turnover growth was 301 per cent and earnings growth was 332 per cent. The firm posted a pre-tax profit rise of 34 per cent to £75.6million in 2018, while revenue jumped 40 per cent to £237.4million.

BUSINESS BITES

■ BRITISH Land is selling off a dozen Sainsbury’s superstores to reduce its exposure to the troubled retail sector. It will pocket £193.5million from the £429million deal with US property firm Realty Income Corporation.

■ EMPLOYERS are increasingly using agency workers amid pessimism over the economy and Brexit uncertainty, a study says. Almost half surveyed expressed concern over candidates’ availability for permanent jobs.

■ MORE than 7.5million vehicles, 34 per cent of UK cars and vans, initially failed their MOT in 2018, the DVSA says. Lights and signals were the most common reasons, followed by suspension, brakes and tyres.

■ BORROWERS nearing the end of two-year fixed-rate mortgages could see their rate more than double from 2.3 per cent to 4.89 per cent if they do not hunt around for a new deal, warns Moneyfacts.co.uk.

■ TWITTER saw revenue growth of 18 per cent for the first quarter this year compared with the same period last year, reaching £605million. But monthly users have fallen 6million, to 330million, since last year.