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Labor Day Job Outlook: Heaviest Job Cuts Are Behind Us

TMT Newswire

CHICAGO, IL -- As the economy continues its slow crawl toward recovery, the upcoming Labor Day holiday could mark a turning point in the job market. An analysis of layoff trends by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. indicates that the heaviest job-cutting of the year may have occurred in the opening months of 2009, when recession-related downsizing appears to have reached its peak.

"We see more and more signs that the economy is beginning to turn around. While it's too soon to expect a massive hiring binge... the pace of job cuts is continuing downward," said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. Overall, job cuts announced between January and April totaled 711,100, with the largest total for that period on record. While August job cuts are still being tabulated, with 282,948 job cuts announced from May through July, it's clear that the four-month period ending this month will see significantly fewer job cuts.

"Year-end job cuts are likely to increase from the levels recorded during the summer months, but we will probably not return to the levels reached between January and April. Job cuts are expected to continue the overall downward trend in 2010, when we might actually begin to see some small improvements in hiring," said Challenger. Challenger sees Labor Day as the start of the New Year in the workplace and a great time for workers to evaluate their job situation and make "New Year's" resolutions tied to keeping their jobs or finding new ones.

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