Job Cuts Rise in July to 46,887

 

The unexpectedly large layoffs announced by Microsoft helped push July job cuts to the second highest level of the year. In all, U.S.-based employers reported plans to reduce payrolls by 46,887 during the month, according to the report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. 

Read the full report here.

31,434 June Job Cuts Lowest of the Year

After climbing to a 15-month high in May, planned job cuts announced by U.S.-based employers in June plunged 41 percent to 31,434, the lowest one-month total so far this year. Through the first half of 2014, the pace of job cutting is down 5.0 percent from a year ago, according to the report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

June job cuts were 20 percent lower than the same month a year ago, when employers announced 39,372 job cuts. Job cuts during the month dropped sharply from May, when planned layoffs reached 52,961, which was the largest monthly total since February 2013, when 55,356 job cuts were announced.

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52,961 May Job Cuts, Mostly From HP Announcement

Job cuts climbed to the highest level in more than a year, as US-based employers announced plans to reduce payrolls by 52,961 in May, according to the report Thursday from global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

May job cuts were up 31 percent from 40,298 announced layoffs in April.  It was the second consecutive increase in monthly job cuts and the largest one-month total since February 2013, when 55,356 job cuts were recorded.

Last month’s total was 46 percent higher than the 36,398 job cuts announced in May 2013.

Read the full report here.

October Job Cuts Remain Flat at 45,730

The pace of downsizing remained relatively flat in October, as the nation’s employers announced plans to cut 45,730 jobs from their payrolls during the month.  That was up 13.5 percent from 40,289 job cuts recorded in September, according to the latest report on monthly job cuts released Wednesday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

The October job-cut total was down 4.2 percent from the same month a year ago, when 47,724 planned cuts were announced.  This marks the first time in five months that the job-cut total was lower than the comparable period a year ago.

Employers have now announced 433,114 job cuts since January 1.  That is virtually unchanged (down 0.14 percent) from the 433,725 job cuts announced through ten months of 2012.  At the current pace, annual job cuts are positioned to come in slightly below the 2012 year-end total of 523,362, which was the lowest 12-month figure since 1997, when 434,350 job cuts were tracked by Challenger.

The pharmaceutical industry saw the heaviest job cutting in October, with 10,585 job cuts announced.  That is the largest one-month job-cut total for this sector since July 2011, when 13,493 job cuts were announced.  In both October and July 2011, the majority of the announced job cuts came from pharmaceutical giant Merck, which, like many other pharmaceutical companies, has had to adjust research focus and workforce levels toward drugs with the highest potential to win regulatory approval and achieve successful sales levels.

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September Job Cuts Total 40,289 on Health Care, Financial

Planned job cuts fell to their lowest level in three months, as U.S.-based employers announced plans to reduce payrolls by 40,289 in September.  That was down 20 percent from August, when job cuts reached a six-month high of 50,462, according to the latest report on monthly job cuts released Wednesday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

The September total was 19 percent higher than the 33,816 planned job cuts announced the same month last year.  This marks the fourth consecutive month that saw heavier job cutting than a year ago.

As a result of this trend, job cuts in the third quarter were up 25 percent from a year ago.  Overall, 128,452 planned cuts were announced during the three month period ending September 30, compared to 102,910 over the same stretch last year.  The third-quarter total was 13 percent higher than the second quarter, when 113,891 job cuts were announced.

Despite the recent surge, the overall pace of job cutting in 2013 is virtually unchanged from a year ago.  To date, employers have announced 387,384 job cuts, up 0.4 percent from the 386,001 announced from January through September in 2012.

For the third time in the last five months, the health care sector was the leading announcer of job cuts, with reported layoffs totaling 8,128.  That is the highest monthly job-cut total for this sector since November 2009, when these organizations announced 9,558 job cuts.  The sector has now announced 41,085 job cuts in 2013, which is 13.4 percent more than the 36,212 health care job cuts announced in all of 2012.

Get the full report here.

Corrects earlier version which stated September had the highest health cuts since December 2004. We tracked 9,588 health cuts in December 2004, but November 2009 saw 9,558 health cuts.

August Job Cuts Spike to 50,462, Led By Manufacturing

Monthly job cuts surged to the highest level since February, as U.S.-based employers announced plans in August to slash payrolls by 50,462, a 33.8 percent increase from the 37,701 planned job cuts announced in July, according to a report Wednesday from global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Job cuts last month were 57 percent higher than a year ago, when employers announced plans to reduce payrolls by 32,239.  This marks the third consecutive month in which job cuts outpaced the comparable period from 2012.  August ranks as the second largest job-cut month of the year behind February, when announced layoffs reached 55,356.

Employers have now announced 347,095 job cuts so far this year.  That virtually matches the 352,185 job cuts announced from January through August 2012.

August workforce reductions were dominated by the industrial goods sector, where manufacturers announced 22,162 job cuts.  That was the largest job-cut total for this sector since January 2009, when 32,083 planned layoffs were announced.  It is the largest one-month job-cut total for a single industry category this year and nearly surpasses the 26,103 job cuts announced by industrial goods manufacturers in all of 2012.

Get the full report here.

37,701 July Job Cuts on Sequestration, Health Reform Concerns

Job cuts declined slightly in July, as employers announced plans to reduce payrolls by 37,701 workers, down 4.2 percent from 39,372 planned layoffs in June, according to the latest report on monthly job cuts released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Last month’s total was 2.3 percent higher than a year ago, when 36,855 planned job cuts were recorded.  Employers have now announced 296,633 job cuts since January 1, which is 7.3 percent fewer than the 319,946 job cuts announced in the first seven months of 2012.  At the current pace of downsizing, which is averaging 42,376 job cuts per month, 2013 will come in below the 2012 year-end total of 523,362, which was the lowest annual total since 1997 (434,350).

July job cuts were somewhat offset by announced hiring plans that will add 9,728 new workers to employer payrolls in the coming weeks and months.  These include at least 5,000 new workers being hired by online retail giant Amazon.com to meet increasing demand.

July workforce reductions were led by the health care sector, which announced 6,843 planned job cuts.  That represents the highest number of cuts for this sector since 9,558 health care job cuts were recorded in November 2009.  Health care organizations have now cut 29,794 jobs this year, 59 percent more than the 18,770 planned job cuts announced by this point in 2012.

“Cuts in Medicare reimbursements brought about by sequestration and health care reform are hurting hospitals’ bottom line.  Some states are also cutting Medicaid funding, which adds to the financial challenges.  Hospitals are also reporting fewer patients as high-deductible insurance policies discourage would-be patients from seeking health services.  As a result of these factors, health care providers, which had been one of the country’s best job generators in recent years, are being forced to reduce their headcounts,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

Meanwhile, aerospace and defense saw the second largest job-cut total in July, with firms in this sector announcement plans to reduce payrolls by 4,889.  That brings year-to-date job cuts for the sector to 22,750, which ranks fourth among all industries and represents a 20 percent increase from the 19,026 job cuts announced by these employers in all of 2012.

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Q2 Tech Cuts Surge Amid Slowing PC Sales

Job cut announcements in the technology sector more than doubled during the quarter ending June 30, rising to the highest level in a year, according to a special semi-annual report on tech-sector layoffs released Tuesday by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Between April and June, employers in the computer, electronics and telecommunications industries announced plans to cut 20,491 jobs from their payrolls.  That is 144 percent more than the 8,392 job cuts announced in the first quarter of the year and the highest quarterly total since the second quarter of 2012, when technology firms reported plans to cut payrolls by 39,164.

The second-quarter surge was led by computer firms, which saw job cuts increase 365 percent from 3,526 in the first quarter to 16,404 in the latest quarter.  Electronics firms also increased the pace of job cutting in the second quarter, announcing plans to eliminate 2,344 jobs, up 68 percent from 1,395 in the first quarter.

Despite the dramatic increase in tech-sector job cuts last quarter, the overall pace of downsizing has slowed from a year ago.  Through the first six months of 2013, technology employers announced 28,883 job cuts, which is 44 percent fewer than the 51,529 layoffs recorded in the first half of 2012.

Get the full report here.

June Job Cut Report: Over 10K Cuts Attributed to Sequestration This Year

Planned job cuts rose slightly in June, as employers announced workforce reductions totaling 39,372 during the month, up 8.2 percent from 36,398 in May.  While job cuts were up last month, the pace of downsizing through the first half of the year is down about nine percent from a year ago, according to the latest report on monthly job cuts released Wednesday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Led by increased job cuts in the computer and education sectors, June was 4.8 percent higher than the same month a year ago, when employers announced 37,551 planned job cuts.  For the quarter ending June 30, announced layoffs totaled 113,891, down 21.5 percent from the first quarter and 18.6 percent lower than the same three month period in 2012.

The slowdown in job cuts last quarter was responsible for an overall decline in job cuts through the first half of 2013.  Employers announced 258,932 job cuts through the six months of the year, 8.5 percent fewer than the 283,091 job cuts announced by the same point in 2012.  The six-month total is the second lowest since 2000, when employers announced 223,421 cuts from January through June.  The lowest six-month tally since 2000 was 2011, when job cuts totaled 245,806.

To date, Challenger has tracked 10,253 job cuts related to sequestration and other federal spending cuts.  The largest portion of the sequestration cuts have come from the aerospace and defense sector, which announced 4,366 layoffs between January and June.  Government employers have cut another 1,976 jobs related to sequestration.  Health care reform has been cited as the cause for 618 job cuts since the beginning of the year, all of which have occurred in the health care sector.

Full report here.

 

May Job Cuts Hit 36,398; YTD Down 11%

Monthly job cuts declined for the third consecutive month in May, as U.S.-based employers announced plans to trim payrolls by 36,398 during the month, 4.5 percent fewer than 38,121 cuts in April.  The May total was 41 percent lower than the same month a year ago, when employers slashed payrolls by 61,887 , according to the report Thursday from global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

To date, the nation’s employers have announced 219,560 planned job cuts in 2013.  That is down 11 percent from the 245,540 planned cuts announced in the first five months of 2012.

It is not unusual to see job cuts decline during the summer months.  In fact, May is historically the slowest job-cut month of the year, averaging 57,688 since 1993.  The next lowest job-cut month is June, according to Challenger records, which show it averaging 59,887 since 1993.  The overall average monthly total across all months since 1993 is 70,288.

The heaviest job-cutting last month occurred in the health care sector, where 4,886 job cuts were tracked.  That was up slightly from 4,268 health care job cuts in April and more than double the 2,353 announced in May 2012.  Overall, layoffs in health care are up 71 percent in 2013 to 20,867, compared to 12,177 in the first five months of 2012.  

Only two other sectors have seen bigger gains: media, where job cuts have increased 249 percent from 1,829 in the first five months of 2012 to 6,388 as of May; and the financial sector, which has seen job cuts increase by 103 percent from 17,284 in 2012 to 35,091 this year.

Largest Job Cut Increases

 

Jan-May 2012

Jan-May 2013

% Change

Media

1,829

6,388

249.3%

Financial

17,284

35,091

103.0%

Health Care/Products

12,177

20,867

71.4%

Retail

20,983

32,683

55.8%

Non-Profit

938

1,443

53.8%

Get the full report here.