Layoffs Rose Dramatically in July: "Wheels Off the Recovery Wagon"

Just as the markets took an unexpected tumble today, despite the debt deal, another unfortunate announcement for the economy. Layoffs in previously strong sectors like pharmaceutical and retail passed the number of government jobs cut.

From Reuters, today:

The number of planned layoffs at U.S. firms rose to a 16-month high in July as sectors which had been seeing fairly few layoffs unexpectedly bled jobs, a report on Wednesday showed.

Employers announced 66,414 planned job cuts last month, up 60.3 percent from 41,432 in June, according to a report from consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

July's job cuts also were up from the same time a year ago, rising 59.4 percent from the 41,676 job cuts announced in July 2010, and recording the largest monthly total since March, 2010.

Progressives have been warning about the recovery not being so much of a recovery for months, and these numbers seem to back it up.

John A. Challenger, who is CEO of the consulting firm told Reuters that  "a casual observer certainly might conclude that the wheels just fell off the recovery wagon."

Meanwhile, Larry Summerswrote an op-ed in the Washington Post today with a similarly grim prognosis: ", the economy is effectively at a stall..." he wrote, adding that "the economy has at least a 1-in-3 chance of falling back into recession if nothing new is done to raise demand and spur growth

AlterNet / By Sarah Seltzer

Posted at August 3, 2011, 5:08am

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