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Economy in Brief

Challenger Job Cut Announcements Dip
by Tom Moeller  March 5, 2015

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported that job cut announcements during February slipped to 50,579 (+20.9% y/y) following a jump to 53,041 in January. Layoffs fell m/m in the automotive, chemical, commodities, computer, construction, electronics, energy, financial, food, industrial goods, media and telecommunication industries. Layoffs rose in the aerospace/defense, apparel, consumer products, education, entertainment/leisure, government, health care, insurance, pharmaceutical, real estate, retail, services, transportation and utility industries.

During the last ten years there has been a 68% correlation between the level of job cut announcements and the m/m change in payroll employment.

Challenger also samples firms' hiring plans. Hiring increased in February to 14,574 (31.8% y/y) from 8,774 in January. Jobs rose in the aerospace/defense, automotive, construction, financial, media and transportation industries. Hiring declined in the apparel, chemical, computer, electronics, entertainment/leisure, food, health care, industrial goods, insurance, pharmaceutical, services and telecommunication industries.

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

Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Feb Jan Dec Y/Y % 2014 2013 2012

Announced Job Cuts

50,579 53,041 32,640 20.9 483,171 509,051 523,362

Announced Hiring Plans

14,574 8,774 7,332 31.8 821,506 764,206 630,447
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