Tomorrow we’ll bring you the latest employment report and unemployment rate from the Labor Department — one of the most watched pieces of economic data each month.
In the meantime, though, today brings a lot else to scrutinize: Payroll processor ADP says U.S. companies added 158,000 jobs last month. Initial claims for unemployment insurance dropped last week. And productivity growth continued to slow in October — sounds bad at first, but some folks see that as a good omen for hiring.
And we have the monthly job cuts report from the firm Challenger Gray and Christmas, which says that planned layoffs jumped in October — up 41 percent in October to almost 48,000, the highest level since May.
CEO John Challenger says: “We saw over 47,000 job cuts announced in the month, that was up 12 percent from what we saw a year ago. At the same time for the year, we’ve now seen over 433,000 job cuts — that’s 17 percent fewer than the first 10 months of 2011.”
Challenger says the cuts may be due to a spate of poor earnings announcements by companies in October. “In today’s environment, companies take quick action. If their business levels are down, then they may drop their employment levels, they try to satisfy their shareholders by cutting costs,” he says.
As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.
Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.
Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.