Layoffs become rarer even with jobless rate high

Layoffs become rarer even with jobless rate high

Posted: Monday, February 7, 2011 9:06 pm
By: AP

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. labor force has been split into two groups: the relieved and the desperate.
If you have a job, you can exhale; you’re less likely to lose it than at any point in at least 14 years.
If you’re unemployed? Good luck. Finding a job remains a struggle 20 months after the recession technically ended. Employers won’t likely step up hiring until they feel more confident about the economy.
A result is that people who are unemployed are staying so for longer periods. Of the 13.9 million Americans the government says were unemployed last month, about 1.8 million had been without work for at least 99 weeks — essentially two years. That’s nearly double the number in January 2010.
Yet the deep job cuts of the recession have long since ended. In January, companies announced plans to trim fewer than 39,000 jobs, according to outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. That was 46 percent fewer than a year earlier. More strikingly, it was the fewest number of planned layoffs in January since Challenger began keeping track in 1993. For all of 2010, planned layoffs hit a 13-year low.

Published in The Messenger 2.7.11

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