After the London Government Act of 1963 was introduced, the town of Barnet was transferred from the county of Hertfordshire to Greater London, where it is now a borough.
It is currently home to the second-largest population in London, with an estimated 331,500 inhabitants. Much of the workforce is employed in the services, distributive, and public administration sectors, and the rate of unemployment is slightly lower than the average for Outer London.
Barnet enjoys a largely stable and diverse economy, with a high level of entrepreneurship. It currently does not tend to attract large companies; instead the current local economy is mainly made up of small and medium-sized businesses. Major employers include the Local Authority, McDonalds headquarters, Pentland Group, and Brent Cross Shopping Centre (which attracts 20 million visitors a year).
The average gross weekly pay for those in full-time employment is £546.60, compared to the £527.00 London average. Just over 36% of Barnet's residents possess NVQ4 and above qualifications, with only 7.9% holding no qualifications at all.
Recruitment agencies report that there is a higher demand for jobs in the hotel and restaurant, public administration, and distribution sectors than anywhere else in London or the rest of the country.