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Economy in Brief

Challenger U.S. Job Cut and Hiring Announcements Both Increase
by Tom Moeller  May 1, 2014

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported that job cut announcements rose to 40,298 (+5.7% y/y) during April. Layoffs increased m/m in the aerospace/defense, apparel, automotive, education, energy, financial, food, legal, media, retail, services and utility industries. A decline in announcements occurred in the commodities, construction, consumer products, electronics, entertainment/leisure, health care, food, health care, industrial goods, insurance, pharmaceutical, telecommunications and transportation industries. During the last ten years there has been a 62% correlation between the level of job cut announcements and the m/m change in payroll employment.

Challenger also samples firms' hiring plans. They rebounded to 11,145 (19.6% y/y) due to more hiring in the aerospace/defense, automotive, computer, electronics, entertainment/leisure, financial, health care, industrial goods, services and telecommunications industries. Hiring fell in the education, energy, food, insurance and retail industries.

The Challenger figures are available in Haver's SURVEYS database.

Challenger, Gray & Christmas Apr Mar Feb Y/Y % 2013 2012 2011
Announced Job Cuts 40,298 34,399 41,835 5.7 509,051 523,362 606,082
Announced Hiring Plans 11,145 6,860 11,054 19.6 764,206 630,447 537,572
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