Over 100 CEOs Out In October; Health, Gov’t, Financial Lead

Turnover among the nation’s chief executive officers declined slightly in October as 104 planned CEO departures were reported, down 2.8 percent from the 107 in September, according to a report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

The October total was down 3.7 percent from the same month a year ago when 108 were recorded.  Challenger has now tracked 1,053 CEO changes so far this year, 5.3 percent more than the 999 departures announced in the first ten months of 2012.

Due to continued changes in the health care landscape, this sector led all industries in October with 29 CEO departures, 25 of which came from hospitals and hospital systems.  Of those CEOs, nine went on to serve as high-level executives of other hospitals, usually as CEO.  To date, the health care sector has now seen 224 CEO departures in 2013, which is the highest turnover among all sectors tracked by Challenger.  Continue reading

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Retailers Opening Thanksgiving Day

In our annual holiday hiring forecast, global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas predicted holiday hiring to remain flat or decline slightly from last year’s record levels.  However, even with a slight decline in overall hiring, national retail chains are expected to hire tens of thousands of seasonal workers across the country.  Indeed, retailers so far have announced plans to hire 444,000 seasonal workers, according to initial tracking by Challenger.  Much of this hiring will occur over the next three to four weeks, so that retailers have workers in place for the all-important Black Friday sales.  Some retailers have moved up Black Friday shopping from early Friday morning to late Thanksgiving Thursday night.  “Among those starting sales on Thanksgiving Day is Macy’s, which is planning to hire the most seasonal workers so far this year, with 83,000, and announced some of its stores would open at 8p.m. Thanksgiving Day.  While there was some public criticism of earlier and earlier sales, the outcry obviously did not translate to decreased traffic or else Macy’s and others that are sure to make similar announcements in the coming weeks would not be doing it again this year,” said John Challenger. “The early opening will only increase the need for temporary seasonal workers, who are likely to be the ones stuck working on Thanksgiving Day, as those with more seniority tend to get first-preference when it comes to assigning holiday hours,” noted Challenger.  Will other retailers join Macy’s in opening on Thanksgiving Day?  How might early openings impact retail employment?  What can those seeking holiday jobs do to improve their chances of finding employment?

Macy’s

83,000

Target

70,000

Amazon

70,000

Walmart

55,000

Kohl’s

53,000

Toys R Us

45,000

JCPenney

35,000

GameStop

17,000

Meijer

9,000

JoAnn’s

3,000

eBay (Louisville, KY)

2,000

Eddie Bauer (Columbus, OH)

1,200

eBay (Eau Claire, WI)

800

107 CEOs Out In September, Highest Quarterly Total Since Q4 2008

Turnover among the nation’s chief executive officers declined slightly in September as 107 planned CEO departures were reported, down 5.6 percent from the 113 in August, according to a report released Wednesday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

The September total was up 12.6 percent from the same month a year ago when 95 were recorded.  This marks the third consecutive month in which CEO changes outpaced the same month last year.

Overall, third-quarter CEO departures totaling 348 are up 23 percent from the 282 announced during the same three-month span in 2012.   It is the highest quarterly since 352 CEO changes were recorded in the fourth quarter of 2008, the year Challenger tracked the most CEO changes on record with 1,484.

Challenger has now tracked 949 CEO changes so far this year, 6.5 percent more than the 891 departures announced in the first nine months of 2012.

Get the full report here.

113 CEO Changes in August Include Microsoft, Groupon, US Steel Announcements

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CEO Departures by Industry

Turnover among the nation’s chief executive officers remained elevated in August as 113 planned CEO departures were reported, including notable retirement announcements from Steve Ballmer at Microsoft and John Surma at U.S. Steel Corp.

While the 113 departures recorded in August is above the year-to-date average (105), the monthly total was 11.7 percent lower than July, when CEO changes reached a three-year high of 128,  according to the latest report on CEO turnover released Wednesday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

The August total was up 8.7 percent from the 104 CEO exits recorded in August of last year.  This marks the fifth month this year that CEO changes were higher than the corresponding period from a year ago.

Challenger has now tracked 842 CEO changes so far this year, 5.8 percent more than the 796 recorded in the first eight months of 2012. 

Last month saw a major announcements from tech-giant Microsoft, whose CEO Steve Ballmer announced he would leave amid falling sales and charges that the company is slow to adapt to mobile markets and tablet PCs. Investors reacted positively to the news, as it increased share prices.  Meanwhile, Chicago start-up-turned-public-offering Groupon announced that Eric Leftkofsky would continue at the helm after taking over as interim CEO for Andrew Mason in February. Co-CEO Ted Leonsis will remain Chairman.

“Neither Microsoft nor Groupon had a firm succession plan for replacing Ballmer and Mason.  This is not uncommon, but it could prove costly in the long run, as companies must first struggle to fill the void in leadership and then traverse a volatile period of adjustment that typically occurs following such a significant change,” said John Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.  

Get the full report here.

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.

Relocation Rate Rises On Housing Market, Local Hiring

Percentage of Job Seekers Relocating for New Positions, Four Quarter Moving Average

Percentage of Job Seekers Relocating for New Positions, Four Quarter Moving Average

The percentage of unemployed managers and executives relocating for new jobs in the first half of 2013 climbed to its highest level since the beginning of the recession, according to new data released Wednesday by global outplacement and coaching consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.  The rising relocation rate is further evidence of an improving housing market and regional employment gains.

On average, 14 percent of managers and executives moved for new jobs through the first two quarters of 2013.  That was more than double the 6.7 percent who relocated for employment during the same period of 2012.   The first-half average is the highest since the first two quarters of 2009, when an average of 16.3 percent of managers and executives pulled up stakes and moved for employment. Continue reading

Start-Up Activity Increases But Remains Too Risky For Most Jobless

Percentage of Job Seekers Starting Their Own Businesses

Percentage of Job Seekers Starting Their Own Businesses

The percentage of job seekers starting their own businesses increased by 33 percent in the first half of 2013, as an improving lending market and employment picture provided both the financial and job safety nets sought by fledgling entrepreneurs.  Even with the increase, however, less than five percent of managers and executives opted for self-employment over a more traditional career path, suggesting that starting a business remains far too risky for most people.

The latest data on start-up trends was released Wednesday by global outplacement and coaching consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.  The firm’s quarterly survey of job-seeking managers and executives revealed that an average of 4.1 percent started their own business over the first two quarters of 2013.  That was up from 3.0 percent of those starting businesses in the same period a year ago.

The four-quarter moving average, which stabilizes volatile quarterly data for start-up activity, increased to 4.8 percent, compared to 3.1 percent at the same point a year ago.  At the beginning of 2010, the four-quarter average for portion of jobless managers and executives starting a business stood at 7.8 percent.  Continue reading