Planned layoffs declined for the second consecutive month in July, as employers announced job cuts totaling 36,855, down 2.0 percent from 37,551 in June, according to the latest job cuts report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
Job cuts last month were down 45 percent from a year ago, when employers announced plans to cut 66,414 workers from their payrolls in July. This is just the third time this year employers announced fewer cuts than the same month in 2011.
Overall, employers have announced 319,946 job cuts so far this year. The pace of downsizing is virtually even with a year ago; up just 2.5 percent from the 312,220 planned layoffs announced from January through July.
July job cuts were led by employers in the financial sector, which announced 6,156 planned layoffs during the month. That is largest number of monthly job cuts announced by this industry since January, when financial job cuts totaled 7,611.