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‘Parasites!’ Britons furious as billionaires exploit taxpayer-funded UK furlough schemes


BRITONS are furious after it emerged that at least 20 UK billionaires have sought to furlough staff using a taxpayer-funded Government scheme during the coronavirus pandemic.

PUBLISHED: 00:13, Mon, May 18, 2020 | UPDATED: 00:23, Mon, May 18, 2020

Furlough: ‘Concern’ over billionaires using scheme says expert


Fury erupted after it emerged 63 of the Sunday Times’ Rich Listers – a list of the richest people in the country – have furloughed staff. As the deadly virus stopped millions of employees from going into work, the government announced a furlough scheme to allow employers to pay their staff 80 percent of their salary.


But Express.co.uk readers reacted furiously to the news, branding them “parasites” and called for them to be “named and shamed”.

One said: “The greed more money wants more money and nobody stop them if they do not have it here they move to where they can keep more



One wrote: “greedy sods, just parasites.”

A commentator said: “The People continue to pay for the rich and privileged to be rich and privileged.

Another said: “These rich parasites were only to eager to speak out against the government when Boris backed leave. Now they’re quick enough to come with their begging bowl when things go wrong. Let them suffer like the rest of us. Although they’ve still got enough money to get by.”


One posted: “They should be make pay it back they have a nough money to furalow their staff bloody selfish show how the rich get their money.”

Another added: “Those with it…exploit…those without pay for it.”

Britain’s super-rich have lost more than £54 billion in the past two months amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.


The combined wealth of the UK’s 1,000 richest people has plummeted for the first time since the financial crash, with some billionaires counting losses of up to £6 billion since last year, it adds.

The list says that a number of billionaires have also sought to use the Government’s emergency furlough scheme, under which staff are paid 80% of their salary by the state up to £2,500 a month.

Inventor Sir James Dyson is the richest person in the UK for the first time, as the Brexit-backing entrepreneur saw his wealth grow by £3.6 billion over the past year, climbing to £16.2 billion.

Super rich furlough

The government announced a furlough scheme to allow employers to pay their staff 80 percent of their salary (Image: EXPRESS)

Sir James, 72 , topped the list despite losing £500 million of his own money on an electric car project which was scrapped.

But he was helped by the declining fortune of the Hinduja brothers, who suffered losses of £6 billion since last year and dropped into second place.

There were a record 25 female billionaires on this year’s list, the 32nd edition of the definitive guide to Britain’s most affluent people.

List compiler Robert Watts said: “Ever since the financial crisis of 2008-9, Britain’s wealthiest people have become richer and richer.

“COVID-19 has called time on their golden period. This year’s rich list paints a picture of Britain on the brink of calamity – two months after lockdown and already billions of pounds have been wiped out.

“You may not like the super-rich, but it is hard to deny that our economy will need the jobs they create and the taxes they and their companies pay if we are to escape a prolonged recession that causes further misery to millions.”

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