Layoff Plans Soar By 126% In September To 115,730, 212% Higher Than Year Ago, Highest Since April 2009
Still bullish on the Friday NFP number? According to Challenger we just went through a "sea-change" event as "Employers announced plans to shed 115,730 workers from their payrolls in September, making it the worst jobcut month in over two years. Heavy reductions planned by the military accounted for a large portion of September job cuts, signaling what may lie ahead as the federal government seeks across-the-board cuts in spending. September job cuts were 126 percent higher than the 51,114 announced in August, according to the latest Challenger report. They were 212 percent higher than September 2010, when employers announced just 37,151 job cuts. Last month’s total is the highest since April 2009, when 132,590 job cuts were announced." Yet this is good news, considering that the biggest source of cuts was the bloated government and the insolvent Bank of America: "One-third of the layoffs announced this year came from government employers. It is, by far, the largest job-cutting sector, with 159,588 announced job cuts to date. This figure includes 54,182 government-sector cuts in September, 50,000 of which are the result of a five-year troop reduction plan announced by the United States Army. The second largest job-cutting sector to date is the financial sector, which announced 54,013 planned layoffs between January 1 and the end of September. That is up 177 percent from the 19,474 job cuts recorded over the first three quarters of 2010. Of the 54,013 financial job cuts this year, 31,167 occurred in September, with 30,000 resulting from Bank of America’s multi-year workforce reduction plan aimed at saving the struggling bank $5 billion per year." That said, while there is no correlation to coincident NFP data, this will be very ugly news down the line.
Cuts by Industry:
And reasons for termination:
And to those who say the military-industrial complex is still in charge:
While the U.S. Army is not a traditional employer, its announcement was very corporate-like in that plans to achieve the reductions “using voluntary and involuntary separations and is considering buyouts, reductions in high-year tenure limits and early retirement boards,” according to an Army Times article, which quoted Army Service Personnel Chief Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick.
Last month’s Army cuts represent the second such military personnel reduction announced in as many months. In August, 17,500 military personnel cuts were announced by the Army, Air Force and Navy.
“As officers, soldiers and even civilian personnel get displaced from the military, they face special challenges when making the transition to the traditional job market. Perhaps the biggest challenge is taking the often specialized skills and experience gained in the military and translating it to the private sector,” said Challenger.
“The other big obstacle is the fact that many of these individuals entered the military straight out of high school or college and the entire jobsearch process, from resume writing to interviewing strategy, is completely foreign to them. For these reasons, many former soldiers struggle to find their way in the job market.”
According to the latest employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 10.1 percent of military veterans 18 years and older were unemployed in August. Unemployment among veterans of the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan stood at 16.6 percent.
“Given the opportunity, former military typically prove themselves to be ideal employees. They tend to be more loyal, more disciplined and are better at most when it comes to thinking on their feet. President Obama is definitely taking a step in the right direction by providing tax incentives to employers that open their recruiting doors a little wider for veterans,” said Challenger.
“Other steps that could be taken include increased education for both employers as well as job-seeking veterans on how the skills and experience gained in service translate to the non-military workforce. It may also be necessary to retrain those exiting military service for occupations that are in demand. Lastly, military personnel impacted by separations could be provided with some basic job-search training on such areas as preparing a resume, networking strategies, interviewing techniques, etc.,” he said.