US: Challenger Job-Cut Report

Thu Jun 04 06:30:00 CDT 2015

Actual Previous
Announced Layoffs - Level 41,034 61,582

Jobless claims are down and so is Challenger's layoff count, at 41,034 in May vs 61,582 in April. Layoffs in May last year totaled 52,961. What layoffs there were, were led by the financial sector, reflecting a 5,000 layoff announcement by JP Morgan, and by the government sector where a 4,500 announcement was made by Massachusetts. Challenger's count is low but hasn't been as impressive as the hard data from jobless claims, the latest news of which will be posted later this morning at 8:30 a.m. ET.

This monthly report counts and categorizes announcements of corporate layoffs based on mass layoff data from state departments of labor. The job-cut report must be analyzed with caution. It doesn't distinguish between layoffs scheduled for the short-term or the long term, or whether job cuts are handled through attrition or actual layoffs. Also, the job-cut report does not include jobs eliminated in small batches over a longer time period. Unlike most economic data, this series is not adjusted for seasonal variation.

The job-cut report is basically a rehash of the weekly jobless claims report but provides additional insight into where layoffs are occurring. There is industry and geographic (states) detail that is not available with weekly jobless claims.