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Economy in Brief

Challenger Survey Layoff Announcements Increase
by Tom Moeller  October 6, 2016

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported that job cut announcements during September rose to 44,324 (-24.7% y/y) and made up most of the August decline to 32,188. Layoffs rose in the aerospace/defense, chemical, commodities, education, electronics, financial, government/nonprofit, media, retail, telecommunications and utility industries. Layoffs fell in the apparel, automotive, computer, construction, consumer products, energy, entertainment/leisure, food, health care, industrial goods, insurance, pharmaceutical, services and transportation 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 jumped to 487,075 last month (-1.1% y/y) following a 9,101 rise in August. It rose in the computer, energy, entertainment/leisure, retail (where it surges every September),  telecommunications and transportation (also where it often jumps in September) industries. Hiring fell in the aerospace/defense, apparel, automotive, construction, financial, food, health care, industrial goods, insurance and pharmaceutical industries.

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

Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Sep Aug Jul Sep Y/Y % 2015 2014 2013

Announced Job Cuts

44,324 32,188 45,346 -24.7 598,510 483,171 509,051

Announced Hiring Plans

487,075 9,101 16,051 -1.1 690,751 821,506 764,206
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