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Economy in Brief

Challenger Job Cut Announcements Fall Sharply
by Tom Moeller  April 2, 2015

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported that job cut announcements during March declined to 36,595 (+6.4% y/y) following a fall to 50,579 in February. Layoffs fell m/m in the aerospace/defense, computer, energy, entertainment/leisure, financial, government, insurance, real estate, retail, services, telecommunications, transportation and utility industries. Layoffs rose in the apparel, automotive, consumer products, education, electronics, food, health care, industrial goods, legal, media and pharmaceutical 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 decreased last month to 6,412 (-6.5% y/y) from 14,574 in February. Jobs rose in the aerospace/defense, chemical, consumer products, energy, food, pharmaceutical, retail, services and telecommunications industries. Hiring declined in the automotive, construction, financial, government, health care, industrial goods, medias and transportation industries.

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

Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Mar Feb Jan Y/Y % 2014 2013 2012

Announced Job Cuts

36,594 50,579 53,041 6.4 483,171 509,051 523,362

Announced Hiring Plans

6,412 14,574 8,774 -6.5 821,506 764,206 630,447
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