Jobless Claims Surge Most In 2 Years As Challenger Warns Of "Significant" Jump In Retail, Computer Layoffs

With both ISM Manufacturing and Services employment indices collapsing, endless headlines of layoffs, Challenger-Grey noting Q1 as the worst since 2009, and NFIB small business hiring weak, it is no surprise that initial jobless claims is finally waking up. For the 3rd week in a row - the longest streak since July 2015. The last 3 weeks have seen a 9.1% surge in jobless claims - the biggest such rise since April 2014.

 

 

And finally, as Challenger-Grey notes,

Through the first quarter of 2016, employers announced 184,920 job cuts, up 31.8 percent from the 140,241 cuts tracked the first three months of 2015.

 

The first quarter saw 75.9 percent more job cuts than in the final quarter of 2015, when 105,079 job cuts were recorded. US companies announced the most 1Q layoffs since 2009 as oil-related cuts continue to inflate numbers, according to data from Challenger Gray.

Citing John Challenger, MarketTalk adds that announcements "have increased significantly" in retail and computers, adding, "While it may be too early to sound the alarm bells, the upward trend outside of the energy sector is somewhat worrisome." Overall announced layoffs by Challenger Gray's count have been 185K this quarter, versus 140K a year earlier.

It's the worst start to a year since 2009, when in the wake of the financial crisis companies announced plans that 1Q to cut 562K jobs.