Mike: Good day to all and welcome to another week of The Layoff List. 

The only notable bit of economic news this day is Housing Market Index, which bounced last month from historically low readings. An improved housing market can lead to improved employment, especially in construction and building materials. With the buying season in bloom, low interest rates, depressed home prices and an $8000 tax credit for first time buyers, the market is likely to rebound. 

The auto dealership cutbacks will be making news this week as those dealers detail the job losses associated with closings, consolidations and cutbacks. It’s reported that up to 160,000 could lose jobs due to these dealer closings, but I think that’s a conservative estimate, since it doesn’t include smaller businesses that perform repairs, distribute parts, or clean and maintain the dealership buildings and grounds. Municipal tax receipts will decrease, which can lead to fewer jobs. The local diner, pizza parlor, car wash, gas station and towing service will all be impacted. Have any of you been impacted by these proposed closings?  
Mike: Below is a well presented look at how the Chrysler dealership closings are starting and it doesn’t look like a very smooth process:

Readers (naked capitalism) are probably well aware that Chrysler and GM have started the process of closing dealerships. Chrysler is shedding 789 of its 3200 dealers, and GM is excising 2600 of its 6246, with 1100 notified last week. UBS estimates that the total job losses could reach 160,000, although some dealers may be able to operate at a lower level of activity as service operations and/or used car dealers, and may be able sign up with another brand.

via naked capitalism: How Is Chrysler Closing Dealerships? Not Nicely, And Maybe Not Well, Either.


Mike: Here is another blip on the same subject, but again this doesn’t even consider the outside businesses and the impact of job loss. These simply show dealer affected job losses:


(According to NADA, the average dealership employed 54 people, as of 2007. Since 2007, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a 13.8% decline in employment at new car dealers, through February. Assuming 47 employees per dealer now, the Chrysler closures suggest a cut in payrolls of 37k over the next two months, and the GM closures suggest a cut of 121k over a slightly longer—yet undetermined (period)……

via Across the Curve » Blog Archive » UBS on Impact of Chrysler Dealer Closings.



Gary Markstein - May 18

Gary Markstein - May 18



Mike: How stressed is your county? The AP has a Stress Test Index that maps economic conditions of each county. Take a look and see where your county stands: AP Economic Stress Test Index



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* Larger layoff announcements and important economic reports:

Navigation links to today’s stories:

Microsoft/Google/IBM and other Rumors & News


apple– Apple appears to be building a large, distributed helpdesk operation, either in anticipation of a major new product, or simply to sustain the company’s growing popularity.

Apple this summer is recruiting about 450 “At Home” technical support staff in at least six cities across the U.S., according to a document seen by Cultofmac.com.

via Apple Hiring Home-Based Support Staff: New Product, Or Growing Popularity? | Cult of Mac.


General Economic News


– WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. homebuilder sentiment jumped to its highest level in eight months in May, a private survey showed on Monday, supporting views that the three-year housing slump might be close to an end.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index rose to 16 from 14 in April, in line with market expectations.

via U.S. home builder sentiment rises in May | Reuters .


Mike: Last year 126,000 NY residents moved elsewhere and many may have decided to test their fortunes in TX. 

– Across the nation, unemployment is sky-high, the housing market is sucking wind and recessionary fears have frozen Americans in place.

Just don’t tell that to a stream of new residents who are “voting with their feet” that Texas is the safest place to ride out the storm and the place to be when the economy recovers.

Even in the midst of a recession, economists, demographers and relocation experts believe the Lone Star State is on the cusp of becoming The New California.

via From the Midwest to the Pacific, job seekers are heading to Texas | Top Stories | Star-Telegram.com.


– Real-estate Web site Zillow.com said that overall, the number of borrowers who are underwater climbed to 20.4 million at the end of the first quarter from 16.3 million at the end of the fourth quarter. The latest figure represents 21.9% of all homeowners, according to Zillow, up from 17.6% in the fourth quarter and 14.3% in the third quarter.

“What’s going on here is that you don’t have any markets that have turned around and you have new markets, like Dallas, that have joined the ranks” of communities where home prices have fallen, said Stan Humphries, a Zillow.com vice president.

via House-Price-Drops-Leave-More-Underwater: Personal Finance News from Yahoo! Finance.


Government Layoff News


– SAN FRANCISCO, May 16 (UPI) — San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom says his city’s increasing budget deficit means 1,000 city workers will have to be fired within months.

via S.F. mayor says 1,000 city jobs to be cut – UPI.com.


–  Grosse Pointe Woods — Hit hard by declining enrollment and rising health care and pension costs, the Grosse Pointe Public School System has pink-slipped 74 teachers, and more cuts could be on the way as the district wrestles with a $5.4 million budget shortfall.

via Grosse Pointe schools lay off 74 teachers | detnews.com | The Detroit News.


usps– WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Postal Service has cut its staff by 25,000 this year as it struggles to reduce massive deficits, Postmaster General John Potter said Monday.

Postal employment is now below 635,000, Potter said, down from about 800,000 in 1999.

via Post office has cut 25,000 jobs this year – Yahoo! Finance.


– Georgia State University will cut 300 jobs to help it save $9 million as it deals with “ongoing budget shortfalls.”

via Georgia State eliminates 300 jobs – Atlanta Business Chronicle: .


– Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti has sent notices to 177 employees that they will lose their jobs by the end of July.


US and some Canada Layoff News



gm14chrysler16– But “help” that pays Chrysler to shutter factories in Ohio, Wisconsin, Missouri, and Michigan and move work to Mexico, that pays General Motors to shutter factories in locations across the country in order to move the work to China, that pays Chrysler and GM to drop roughly 1,900 dealerships, is not going to get the American middle class through this downturn.

The dealership closings, which were announced this week, will be especially tough on minority owners and, according to the dealer’s association, could cost as many as 100,000 jobs nationwide.

via Auto Bailout Blues: Spin, Lies and Layoffs.


gm15chrysler17– Reuters adds that the “unprecedented closures under the direction of the Obama administration” will put 100,000 or so jobs at risk. CNN Money provides as a complement to its coverage, a video with managing editor of Fortune magazine, Andy Serwer, discussing how the cuts will affect local communities and supporting businesses. “These car dealerships are really central to many towns, small towns and even big towns, not only the economy but also to the community,” he said. “[They] support the little league, the rotary club and of course local advertising … and that’s a lot of revenue.”

via GM Follows in Chrysler’s Footsteps | Green Business | Reuters .



Clay Jones - May 18

Clay Jones - May 18


gm16– G.M. already imports a third of the vehicles that go to showrooms in this country. That percentage would not change in the plan that G.M. is preparing to submit to the administration to justify billions of dollars in new loans to stave off collapse. G.M. would emerge a smaller company, with fewer employees and less output in this country and abroad. But imports would rise from low-cost countries, particularly Mexico and China, and that would be offset by fewer imports from Canada and Europe.

via G.M. Seeks More Imports From Low-Wage Countries – NYTimes.com.


amex– NEW YORK (AP) — American Express says it is eliminating about 4,000 jobs as part of a plan to slash $800 million in costs for the remainder of the year.

The layoffs represent about 6 percent of the credit card lender’s current global work force. The company says reductions will hit across business units, markets and staff groups.

via American Express slashing 4,000 jobs, 6 percent of work force, as part of $800M in cost cuts – Los Angeles Times.



dow1– Rohm & Haas’ new owner has notified the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania it expects a mass layoff at its Philadelphia home office starting July 8.

Dow Chemical Co., which acquired Rohm & Haas on April 1, sent the formal notice to the Bureau of Labor and Industry on May 8. It said layoffs could continue through Dec. 31 at the Rohm & Haas headquarters at Sixth and Market Streets.

Dow would not say how many layoffs are expected but told the state that the first three employees to lose their jobs would be two directors and a category manager.

via Rohm & Haas plans widespread layoffs | Philly | 05/16/2009.


crucible-materials1– The company gave the state 90 days notice that it could close or significantly cut the number of jobs in Geddes if it does not find a buyer, financing or is unable to reorganize and repay its debts under court supervision. The company employs 1,000 people, including 675 locally.

via Crucible looks for a buyer, says it could close – syracuse.com.


casino– Officials at M Resort in Henderson say they have laid off about 5 percent of its 2,000-person work force this week.

The $1 billion hotel-casino opened on March 1 on the south end of Las Vegas Boulevard. It hired 250 additional workers within its first week of operation on the strength of large crowds and good reviews.

via Less then two months after it opens, Henderson casino-resort has layoffs | www.rgj.com | Reno Gazette-Journal.


– Tulsa, Okla.-based AAON Inc. announced in a letter to staff late last week that AAON Canada will cease operations July 23…………

According to company’s 2008 annual report, there are 53 employees in Canada and close to 1,400 in total. AAON trades on the NASDAQ exchange, with a closing price on Friday of $19.95.

via TheSpec.com – BreakingNews – Burlington plant closing .


harley-davidson1– Harley-Davidson plans to cut 400 more jobs to deal with a 37 percent first-quarter profit drop.

The top seller of heavyweight motorcycles in the United States is in the midst of a restructuring effort that is expected to cut between 1,400 and 1,500 jobs.

via Profit drop means more job cuts | courier-journal.com | The Courier-Journal.


hospital12– BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana State University Sytem announced Monday it will implement $24 million in spending cuts over the next year including the elimination of more than 300 jobs at the Interim LSU Public Hospital in New Orleans.

via LSU System to cut 300 jobs at New Orleans public hospital – Louisiana Politics – NOLA.com .


hospital14– Sutter Health, which runs many of the Bay Area’s largest hospitals and medical groups, is cutting 121 information technology jobs at its Information Services department in Rancho Cordova, near Sacramento.

via Sutter Health cuts 121 IT jobs in Rancho Cordova – San Francisco Business Times: .


– The consolidation of WMA and Endeavor is beginning in earnest this morning as WMA execs began the process of informing more than 100 agents and other staffers that they would be let go as of May 31.

via WMA layoffs begin – Entertainment News, Film News, Media – Variety.


– Lawson Software Inc. is laying off approximately 150 employees, about 4 percent of its global workforce, the company said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday.

The majority of those cuts will be in Europe, Lawson spokesman Joe Thornton said.

via Lawson cutting 150 jobs, mostly in Europe – Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal: .


hospital15– North Memorial Health Care in Robbinsdale says it will reduce its work force through layoffs and reduced hours, which will impact about 170 employees.



International Layoff News



alliance-boots-LONDON — Alliance Boots PLC said Monday it is cutting about 1,500 jobs across its pharmaceutical-wholesale division in response to intense competition, difficult market conditions and major regulatory changes in some European countries.

via Alliance Boots to Cut 1,500 Jobs – WSJ.com.


white-young-green– White Young Green Plc (WHY.L), a British construction consultancy, said it cut 324 jobs, closed seven regional offices and warned of lower profit for the full year on related costs, sending its shares down 21 percent.

via UPDATE 2-White Young Green cuts 324 jobs, warns of lower profit | Markets | Market Movers | Reuters .


gavel15– Addleshaw Goddard has launched a firm-wide restructuring, which is expected to see 85 non fee-earners lose their jobs, fee-earners work reduced hours and salaries cut.

via Another 85 jobs to go in Addleshaws restructuring | News | The Lawyer.


– Austrian injection moulding machinery maker Engel is in discussions with the works council and local employment offices over plans to cut up to 400 jobs across its plants at Schwertberg, Dietach and Sankt Valentin, according to national media sources.

via Plastics & Rubber Weekly – News.


– Workers at one of Wairarapa’s flagship industries were left shocked and jobless yesterday when the axe fell on Bouzaid and Ballaben, Greytown, and its Pahiatua outpost.

About 80 staff were told their jobs had gone and walked away from work stations some had spent more than 25 years at, without receiving their final pay.

via 80 jobs axed – Wairarapa Times-Age – 2009-05-16 17:00:00.0 – localnews.


– PwC cuts jobs in ‘ongoing’ process

Sources close to the firm said that employees received an e-mail just over a week ago to indicate that some restructuring might be required because of the economic downturn. On May 8, a number of staff were laid off. A spokeswoman said she could not confirm the number of people who had been made redundant, as the process was ‘‘ongoing’’.

via Sunday Business Post | Irish Business News.


hospital13-ONE hundred jobs will be axed immediately from North Coast Area Health, with 59 going from hospitals across the Northern Rivers, documents obtained by The Northern Star reveal.

Late last night North Coast Area Health service chief executive Chris Crawford confirmed the job cuts and said   another 100 would be announced soon, with 50 more to follow.

via 400 jobs to be axed from North Coast Area Health | News | Lismore Northern Star | Lismore Northern Star.



Hiring News and News You Can Use



– For years, people have been trading business cards to make connections. But what happens when you no longer have a job and the cards that come with it?

Today’s job-seekers aren’t letting that stop them from printing cards. They’re stuffing them in wallets, cars and suit pockets and handing them out everywhere from dinner parties to the grocery store.

In one of the tightest job markets in years, when the unemployed are trying harder than ever to market themselves, business cards are becoming an increasingly important tool — more practical than a stack of résumés and more professional than exchanging numbers on a napkin.

via Business cards a must-have for jobless – Business – News & Observer.


– Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, enacted last month, every person who receives unemployment benefits during 2009 is eligible to exclude the first $2,400 of these benefits when they file their tax return next year. For a married couple, the exclusion applies to each spouse, separately. Thus, if both spouses receive unemployment benefits during 2009, each may exclude from income the first $2,400 of benefits they receive.

via First $2,400 of Unemployment Benefits Tax Free for 2009.


– General Mills, an international company that markets some of the world’s best- known food brands, will establish a new distribution center in Social Circle, investing $42 million and creating 112 jobs.

via GIS Food giant will build in Walton, creating 112 jobs.


– Ball valve maker KMC Group will open its first U.S. plant in Atlanta, creating 60 jobs and investing $5 million.


Mike: More news later…………………………..


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Mike Luckovich - May 18

Mike Luckovich - May 18



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