Strikes up sharply on previous year

The ONS has just released the latest strike statistics.

Primary analysis suggests a sharp increase on the previous year, yet the higher levels are consistent with long-term low-levels of strike activity.

"The 2006 total of 754,500 working days lost through labour disputes is significantly higher than the 2005 (157,400) total.

The 2006 total is also higher than the average number of working days lost per year in the 1990s (660,000) but lower than the average for both the 1980s (7.2 million) and the 1970s (12.9 million).

The 158 stoppages total in 2006 is higher than the 2005 and 2004 totals of 116 and 130, respectively.

There were three stoppages beginning in 2005 which continued into 2006.

The number of stoppages has fallen sharply since the 1980s, when the average annual number was 1,129.

The average number in the 1990s was 273.

There were 713,300 workers involved in labour disputes during 2006; this compares with 92,600 in 2005.

The number of workers involved is higher than average number involved in the 1990s (201,600) but below the average in the 1980s (1,040,300)."

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