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Economy in Brief

Challenger Job Cut Announcements Decline While Hiring Jumps
by Tom Moeller  March 31, 2016

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported that job cut announcements during March fell to 48,207 (+31.7% y/y) following the prior month's unrevised decline to 61,599. The latest was the lowest level in three months. Layoffs declined in the automotive, chemical, commodities, computer, electronics, energy, financial, government, industrial goods, insurance, services and transportation industries. Layoffs rose in the aerospace/defense, apparel, consumer products, education, entertainment/leisure, food, health care, legal, media, pharmaceutical, real estate, retail and telecommunications 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 this month to 10,997 (71.5% y/y) after a decline to 7,539 in February. It increased in the aerospace/defense, automotive, chemical, computer, electronics, entertainment/leisure, financial, food, industrial goods, insurance, media, pharmaceutical, retail, services and telecommunications industries. No industries reported hiring declines.

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

Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Mar Feb Jan Mar Y/Y % 2015 2014 2013

Announced Job Cuts

48,207 61,599 75,114 31.7 598,510 483,171 509,051

Announced Hiring Plans

10,997 7,539 8,362 71.5 690,751 821,506 764,206
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