Young people (16-24 year-olds) account for six in 10 (58%) of the payroll jobs lost over the last year, according to the latest ONS labour figures.
The results revealed that the number of payrolled employees in the UK in December 2020 fell by 2.7% compared with the same period of the previous year.
In January 2021, 726,000 fewer people were in payrolled employment when compared with February 2020.
The increase in payrolled employees between February 2020 and January 2021 was largest in the health and social work sector (104,000) and smallest in the accommodation and food services sector (345,000).
Frances O’Grady, general secretary, TUC, said: “Millions of self-employed workers are still being denied the support they need to make ends meet during this crisis. That is not right. Ministers must fix this urgently and extend the self-employed scheme to help more workers.
“The economy needs a jump starting. The government must get on the front foot and start investing in job creation. Fast-tracking spending now on green housing, infrastructure and our public services can create good jobs in the parts of the country that need them most.”
She added: “Ministers must help those who lose their jobs get back on their feet quickly. That means keeping the £20 uplift in Universal Credit in place. – not taking away this lifeline.”