Challenger, Gray & Christmas said companies announced 104,530 job cuts in November, up 5.1% from a year earlier and 2.6% from October. U.S. employers have announced 930,690 job cuts this year, down 19 percent from the same period a year earlier.
November was the 3rd consecutive month of >100k+ intentions to lay off; The last time this occurred was January to April in 2002. Year-to-date, the number stands at 930,690 — 20% below the same time 2003.
GM, Colgate, Time Warner (AOL), United Airlines, PNC, Progress Energy, Cingular were amongst the companies making recent lay off announcements.
2004 is still on track to being the 4th straight year of more than 1 million layoffs. The magic number is just 69,310 more layoffs by December 31st.
John Challenger was pragmatic:
“The biggest worry for the economy is that the large number of lower-middle-class and middle-class Americans struggling to make it paycheck to paycheck will be short discretionary income during the holiday shopping season . . . Higher health care and energy costs for employers and employees are definitely taking a toll. Companies are being forced to enact more cost-containment measures to protect profits.”
This year, the U.S. has created ~2 million new jobs. During the same period, Challenger, Gray reports 960,390 layoff announcements have been made. And on top of that, the Labor Force has grown by 800k bodies over the past two months.
Taken together, these hardly paint a very bright job picture . . .
Job cut plans accelerate
CNN/Money, December 7, 2004: 2:52 PM EST