asked the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of the percentage by which labour costs would rise in industry generally and engineering, respectively, if the working week was reduced to 35 hours without loss of earnings.
An article setting out the possible effects of various methods of work-sharing was published in the April 1978 issue of the Department of Employment Gazette. On the assumptions set out in it, the estimates were that total labour costs would be increased by between 6 per cent. And 8·5 per cent., assuming there was no loss of earnings. No corresponding estimates have been made for manufacturing industry or engineering alone.