Mike: Today’s layoff announcements picked up steam later in the day, as seems to be the case of late. Tomorrow brings us the weekly  Jobless Claims report. Don’t forget to track the flu here: Google maps app –  swine flu tracker

GDP fell more than expected, but it was good news because the consumer is spending more than predicted and businesses are removing inventory. Another one of those bad news is good news reports.

Mike: My favorite quote in the following piece is: 

Despite the disastrous results, many economists said the report hinted that the worst of the declines may be over. The data on investment “have a capitulatory feel to them,” said Stephen Stanley, chief economist for RBS Securities.

Mike: I am impressed with economist Stanley’s “feel” of the economy. You might as well go to the neighborhood fortune teller for advice, since they will also tell you how they “feel” about the economy. Mr. Stanley is likely paid quite well to tell you about his feelings, but for that kind of compensation I would like to see some facts! 

The 6.1% decline in GDP was larger than the 5.1% contraction expected by economists surveyed by MarketWatch. Economists expect a 2% decline in the current quarter, followed by a tepid 1% gain in the third quarter, as the massive stimulus from Congress and the Federal Reserve kicks in. 

Although the decline in GDP in the first quarter was nearly as deep as in the fourth quarter, the report was more varied in tone, with some positives mixed with some record-setting declines. Much of the drop was due to a large inventory correction, which is helping to rebalance supply and demand and is setting the stage for at least a modest recovery.

via GDP falls 6.1% on record drop in investments – MarketWatch .


Mike: Here are our banking friends again saying that they can’t survive without giving outrageous bonuses to their help. Break these guys up and let them get bonuses from a smaller entity that may make money instead of losing billions and getting billions of taxpayer bailouts. These guys are amazing to even ask for these bonuses, but the more amazing part is that the government will, again, allow them to do as they please.

– Citigroup is seeking Treasury permission to pay retention bonuses to workers it says are demoralized amid the company’s restructuring and sharp drop in stock value, according to the paper, which cited people familiar with the matter. The New York-based bank, which recently saw a shuffling of its board of directors, also is hoping to free its highly profitable energy-trading unit Phibro from federal compensation limits, the paper said.


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* Larger layoff announcements and important economic reports:


Microsoft/Google/IBM and other Rumors & News


ibm– IBM’s board on Tuesday raised its dividend by 10 percent and authorized an additional $3 billion worth of share buybacks, underscoring the technology company’s relative strength even in a weak economy.

General Economic News


– NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. home loan applications fell last week to the lowest level since mid-March, driven by a big drop in refinancing demand even as mortgage rates clung to record lows, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association on Wednesday.

A two-month low in requests for loans to purchase homes was especially disappointing, coming in the midst of the important spring sales season when potential buyers usually emerge from winter hiatus, economists said.

via U.S. mortgage applications drop to mid-March low | Special Coverage | Reuters .


– WASHINGTON (AP) — Unemployment rates rose in all of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas for the third straight month in March, with Indiana’s Elkhart-Goshen once again logging the biggest gain.

The Labor Department reported Wednesday all 372 metropolitan areas tracked saw jobless rates move higher last month from a year earlier. Elkhart-Goshen’s rate soared to 18.8 percent, a 13 percentage-point increase. That was the fourth-highest jobless rate in the country.

via The Associated Press: Jobless rates rise in all US metro areas in March.


Government Layoff News


– Grosse Pointe Public Schools will send layoff notices to 74 teachers in an effort to help balance the 2009-10 proposed budget, which is projecting a $5.4 million deficit.

via 74 Grosse Pointe teachers to get layoff notices | Freep.com | Detroit Free Press.


– TAZEWELL, Va. — The Virginia Department of Transportation began notifying 230 hourly employees Tuesday across the Commonwealth that their employment will end June 6.

via Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV – AFTERNOON UPDATE — VDOT begins job cuts.


– The Virginia Department of Transportation eliminated six positions Tuesday in its Culpeper District, according to spokesman Lou Hatter.

via VDOT cuts six jobs in Culpeper District | Culpeper Star-Exponent.


– Millions in stimulus money for the Chesterfield County school system saved hundreds of jobs, but not those of 64 employees, including 12 teachers and 33 instructional aides whose contracts will not be renewed for next year because of budget cuts.

via Chesterfield schools to cut 64 workers, will rehire 11 | Richmond Times-Dispatch.


– INDIANAPOLIS – The state’s largest school district is cutting 300 teaching jobs in an effort to save about $25 million.

The Indianapolis Public School Board voted Tuesday night to also cut 40 non-teaching jobs and move others into lower-paying positions.

via Indianapolis Public Schools cut 300 teaching jobs — chicagotribune.com.


– VERO BEACH, Fla. — The School District of Indian River County is slashing more than 100 jobs to trim millions of dollars from the 2009-10 budget.

via Indian River County School District Cuts 100+ Jobs – Education News Story – WPBF West Palm Beach.


– Grede Foundries will lay off 40 to 45 people by the end of next week, two company spokesmen said in an interview today.

via Grede Foundries plans to cut 40-45 jobs | sctimes.com | St. Cloud Times.


– West Monroe Mayor Dave Norris confirmed Tuesday that 202 employees at the Shaw Process Fabricators on New Natchitoches Road will lose their jobs in June.

via Plant closure to cost 200 jobs | thenewsstar.com | The News Star.


– The Neshaminy School District could eliminate as many as 65 jobs in an effort to reduce its projected $14 million deficit for the upcoming school year.

via PhillyBurbs.com:  Neshaminy could eliminate 65 jobs .


– RALEIGH Gov. Bev Perdue on Tuesday ordered unpaid furloughs for all state workers, public school teachers and higher education employees in an effort to balance the budget in a struggling economy.

via Unpaid furloughs set for state workers | CharlotteObserver.com.


– The other shoe fell for staff in Brookfield-Lyons School District 103 on Monday night with 10 full-time and five part-time support personnel cut from next year’s budget. According to Superintendent Michael Warner, the cuts will save the district about $155,000.

via More staff cuts in District 103.


– The real effect of Paola USD 368 budget cuts were felt Monday night, when school board members voted to not renew the contracts of three district staff members and accepted the resignation of 14 others.

via Three USD 368 staff contracts not renewed | School Board.


– Millions in stimulus money for the Chesterfield County school system saved hundreds of jobs, but not those of 64 employees, including 12 teachers and 33 instructional aids whose contracts will not be renewed at the end of the school year because of budget cuts.

via Chesterfield schools to cut 64 jobs | Richmond Times-Dispatch.


– The district will reduce its workforce by 45 employees next school year. District leaders say 31 staff members received pink slips last Friday and Monday. The remainder of the reductions come as a result of unfilled positions and reduced work hours for some teachers.

via Phoenix School District cuts 45 positions | KDRV.


– Layoffs have begun this week at the agency that runs Orlando International Airport, though officials there are not yet publicly releasing any details.



US and some Canada Layoff News



gm11– General Motors Corp.’s plan to eliminate more than 40 percent of its retail franchises will eliminate as many as 137,330 dealership jobs, the National Automobile Dealers Association said.


goodyear– WASHINGTON (AFP) — Goodyear Tire & Rubber reported Wednesday a first-quarter loss and said 3,800 jobs had been cut under a restructuring program aimed at putting the US tire maker back on the road to profits.

via AFP: Goodyear eliminates 3,800 jobs worldwide amid loss.


cessna1– Cessna Aircraft Co., the nation’s largest builder of corporate jets, is laying off 2,300 workers and closing its Oregon plant as it tries to restructure its product line amid declining plane orders.


jones-apparel– April 29 (Bloomberg) — Jones Apparel Group Inc. said it will shutter about 225 locations in 2009 and 2010, representing a fifth of its own stores, and cut as many as 1,000 jobs to reduce costs as the recession slows apparel and shoe sales.


clear-channel– SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Clear Channel Communications Inc., the largest owner of U.S. radio stations, said Tuesday it is cutting 590 jobs, including some on-air personalities, in its second round of mass layoffs this year amid pressure from the recession and competition from online media.


bobcat1 Bobcat Co. on Tuesday confirmed it is cutting nearly 250 jobs at its two North Dakota plants, citing a slump in the construction equipment market. The company said it expects the market to improve next year.


– A bearings manufacturing plant that has been part of the Caldwell community for 58 years is slated to close June 30, affecting approximately 190 workers six months ahead of the facility’s originally scheduled closure.

via Caldwell plant closing moved up – MariettaTimes.com | News, Sports, Jobs, Ohio, Community Information – The Marietta Times.


– A long-expected second round of national layoffs by Clear Channel is hitting today. The first reported Milwaukee firing is Jeff Lynn, program director at WRIT-FM (95.7) and WQBW-FM (97.3)

via Inside TV and Radio – JSOnline.


– A furniture manufacturing company that has been in the Rocky Mount area since 1964 and employed 140 workers is closing its doors.

via Barcalounger to move Rocky Mount factory, headquarters – News |


– DARTMOUTH – The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth will cut millions of dollars in personnel and administrative expenses, freeze wages and reduce investments to deal with a tightening budget for the next fiscal year, Chancellor Jean F. MacCormack announced Tuesday.

via UMass Dartmouth cuts jobs, expenses – PBN.com – Providence Business News.


– One of the original tenants in the county’s Northpointe Industrial Park in North Buffalo has left at the end of its five-year lease resulting in the loss of 23 local production jobs for the county.

via DRS closes; 23 jobs lost at Northpointe – PittsburghLIVE.com.


sony-elec– Sony Electronics will let go of about 340 San Diego employees through early retirement packages and layoffs as it streamlines in response to a weak economy.

via 340 Sony workers will lose S.D. jobs.


Update:  Minnesota-based Hutchinson Technology Inc., which has a plant in Eau Claire, announced Tuesday a net loss of $57.7 million for its fiscal second quarter and unveiled cost-cutting plans that include the elimination of 50 local jobs and 300 companywide.

via Leader-Telegram Online.


– Currently 45 employees work out of the Mansfield terminal, although the Holland officials did not say how many are drivers and how many are support personnel. The statement said the majority of employees will have the opportunity to transfer to the surrounding Holland facilities.

via USF Holland trucks 45 jobs out of Mansfield | mansfieldnewsjournal.com | Mansfield News Journal.


– Syracuse, NY–Add nine more workers from Cooper Crouse-Hinds to the list of people who have lost their jobs in the current economy.

via Crouse-Hinds cuts jobs – syracuse.com.


– Troy, Michigan-based Noble International Ltd. informed Indiana today that it will close its Butler plant north of Fort Wayne by June 20 unless a buyer for the company can be found. 

The plant’s closing would result in the loss of 153 jobs.                       

IBJ.com – Indianapolis Business Journal – Story Detail.


bristol-myers-squibb– EAST SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Bristol-Myers Squibb says it will cut 100 jobs from its Syracuse-area operations by the end of 2010 as the drug maker consolidates its Drug Safety Evaluation group into facilities in Indiana and New Jersey.

via Drug company eliminates 100 jobs at Syracuse plant –– chicagotribune.com.


– CAMBRIDGE, Neb. (AP) – A Cambridge ethanol plant has shut down, leaving about 20 people without jobs.

via Neb. ethanol plant closes; 20 left without jobs.


ford– Ford Motor Co. wants to lay off up to 380 employees from the Louisville Assembly Plant, United Auto Workers Local 862 officials announced today.

via Ford seeks to lay off up to 380 at Louisville Assembly | courier-journal.com | The Courier-Journal.


 Approximately 135 workers at Presstran in St. Thomas will be laid off temporarily as of May 4.

Coupled with the 725 layoffs announced at Formet Industries, Presstran’s sister plant, on Monday, it brings the total layoffs announced this week to just under 900.

via 135 more laid off – St. Thomas Times-Journal – Ontario, CA .


– The Bishop Museum yesterday confirmed that it will lay off 19 workers and reduce employee work weeks from 40 to 36 hours as it continues to cope with the slumping economy.

via 19 laid off at Bishop Museum | HonoluluAdvertiser.com | The Honolulu Advertiser.


– FAIRHAVEN — A sharp slump in the worldwide sales of golf balls will force the layoff of 169 employees at the Acushnet Co.’s Titleist ball plants and its custom shop, the company announced this morning.

via SouthCoastToday.com: Acushnet Co. to lay off 169 employees.


– At Minntac, about 400 employees have been laid off since February.

Union officials say they’ll add another 250 in this next round of layoffs.

via Minntac Layoffs | Northland’s NewsCenter NBC 6, CBS 3, My 9, and Northland CW for Duluth MN / Superior WI | Local News .


hospital8– MARSHALL – Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center will cut 18 positions as part of a restructuring designed to help the hospital face continued economic challenges in health care, Avera Marshall officials said Wednesday.

via Avera Marshall cutting 18 positions – MarshallIndependent.com | News, Sports, Jobs, Community Info. – Marshall Independent.


newspaper8-BALTIMORE — The Baltimore Sun has laid off nearly 60 people in its newsroom, including veteran editors and managers, columnists, photographers and designers.

via The Baltimore Sun lays off nearly 60 | delawareonline | The News Journal.


– Three UW-Whitewater faculty members will not return to their positions in July including Director of Alumni Relations Tommie Jones.

via University cuts staff – News.


zymogenetics– ZymoGenetics will slash its workforce by one third as it discontinues research on cancer treatments, the Seattle biotechnology company said today in a regulatory filing.



International Layoff News



Mike: It’s certainly news when executives are taking a hit for the workers! 

– April 28 (Bloomberg) — Petroquimica de Venezuela SA, the state chemical company known as Pequiven, will reduce executive salaries by 20 percent and freeze the pay and benefits of the rest of its workers starting May 1 to avoid job cuts.

via Pequiven Reduces Executive Pay 20% to Avoid Job Cuts (Update1) – Bloomberg.com .


– MORE than 100 staff at Clevedon’s biggest employer found out yesterday afternoon their jobs are at risk.

Employees at Clerical Medical’s Castlewood office on Tickenham Road were called into a meeting at 3pm to hear the bombshell.

via 115 jobs to go at Clerical Medical | Clevedon news | This is Somerset.


– 138 employees at the Eaglescliffe plant would be “affected”, the spokesperson said.

via UPDATE 2-Elementis plant closure to affect 138 jobs | Industries | Industrials, Materials & Utilities | Reuters .


– SAP balked at providing a financial outlook today and confirmed ongoing job losses, as it unveiled first quarter financials that showed a massive slide in software revenue for the ERP giant.

via SAP won’t give outlook but continues jobs cuts • The Register.


wind1Update: Danish turbine manufacturer Vestas said it would need to cut 600 jobs in Britain as part of a Europe-wide plan to lay off 1,900 employees. The company has begun consultations with trade unions, and said the credit crisis and a lack of support from the government had affected the decision.

via Wind power firm cuts 600 UK jobs despite ‘green’ Budget.


– Up to 140 jobs face the axe at the Peters and Brownes plant in Balcatta after New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra sells its WA ice cream businesses to confectionery giants Nestle and Bulla Dairy Foods.

via Fonterra sells Peters ice cream to Nestle | WA jobs axed .


corus– The steelmaker Corus has confirmed where the first 1,150 of its planned job cuts will be felt. It said 822 jobs would go at its plants at Stocksbridge, near Sheffield, where steel production will cease, and Tipton in the West Midlands. The remaining redundancies will be made at Llanwern in south Wales and Teesside.

via Steelmaker Corus details where 1,150 jobs will be lost | Business | guardian.co.uk .


– Birmingham van maker LDV has announced it will enter administration on May 6, with the likely loss of almost 3,500 jobs.

via FT.com / Companies / Automobiles –Jobs axe over 3,500 at vanmaker.


– REGIONAL Express will next month discontinue some of its freight services, sell its Metro 3 fleet and sack 24 staff due to a dramatic decline in freight volumes.

via AdelaideNow… Rex axes freight services, cuts staff.


– A radical reorganisation of the armed forces reserves, which would see them integrated more fully with regular forces and better trained, was announced by the Ministry of Defence yesterday. It will involve a cut of about 2,000 posts, mainly as a result of modern communications systems replacing traditional signallers.



Hiring News and News You Can Use



 The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) and Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) have formed a partnership to create immediate jobs for young Ohioans and improve parks, trails and natural assets throughout Ohio.

via Bucyrus Online, the ultimate news & information guide to the Bucyrus and Crawford County, Ohio area.


– Initially this year will have 325, next add 100 people,” said Brady Templeton, AMES General Manager.

That will provide a total of nearly 430 new jobs, most of them in airplane maintenance and repair.

via WBNS 10TV : Former DHL Site Now Home To New Jobs – WBNS-10TV, Central Ohio’s News Leader.


– Riley says this will create more than 1,200 new jobs. The average salary will be $21,754 plus bonuses and benefits. Ryla hopes to fill the first 400 jobs by early summer and the remaining 800 by the end of 2011.


Mike: Today’s layoff announcements picked up steam later in the day, as seems to be the case of late. Tomorrow brings us the weekly  Jobless Claims report. Hang on! Have a great evening and until tomorrow………………

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