WASHINGTON, July 9 (Reuters) – The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits fell sharply last week but the data was distorted by an unusual pattern of layoffs in the automotive industry, which amplified the decline.
The Labor Department said on Thursday that initial claims for state unemployment insurance fell 52,000, the largest drop since December, to a much lower-than-expected seasonally adjusted 565,000 in the week ended July 4, from 617,000 the prior week.
It was the lowest reading since January. Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast claims to drop to 605,000 from a previously reported 614,000.
However, in a sign of ongoing employment weakness, so-called continued claims of people still on jobless aid after an initial week of benefits rose by 159,000 to a record 6.883 million in the week ending June 27, the latest for which data is available.
Microsoft/Google/IBM and other Rumors/News
General Economic News
Government Layoff News
US and some Canada Layoff News
International Layoff News
Hiring News and News You Can Use
– ARMONK, N.Y. — Though IBM is notoriously tight-lipped about its layoffs, many reports suggest that Big Blue has chopped as many as 10,000 workers so far in 2009. Earlier this year the tech giant caused a stir when it was also widely reported that many of these jobs might actually be shipped to other countries such as India. If recent activity is any indication, India appears to have become a strong focal point for the company.
Mike: The following story illustrates how the billions spent on mismanaged, bankrupt auto companies will likely lead to the taxpayer having to pay millions more to clean up their environmental disasters. What has been the personal cost to these auto execs? Nothing. Most of the auto execs and Boards of Directors of bankrupt auto cos are still employed and making outrageous salaries, but their terrible decisions through the past 40 years will leave the taxpayer with economic and environmental scars that will last for decades to come:
– “It’s going to be very difficult to sell or dispose of them,” GM restructuring chief Albert Koch told the judge in charge of the carmaker’s bankruptcy on July 1. GM estimates the plants’ environmental liabilities at $530 million, he said.
One property the Detroit-based carmaker is ditching is a foundry in Massena, New York, bordered by the St. Regis Mohawk Indian Reservation and the St. Lawrence River. Built to make aluminum cylinder heads for the Chevrolet Corvair in the 1950s, it generated PCB sludge and waste from hydraulic fluids.
$225 Million Cleanup
It would have cost GM an estimated $225 million to clean up the site and restock the river with edible fish if it held on to the property, said John Privitera, a lawyer for the tribe at McNamee Lochner Titus & Williams PC in Albany, New York. Now GM creditors or the state will get stuck with the costs because bankruptcy law permits shedding such obligations.
Mike: The retails numbers are quite lousy and much of that is blamed on the rainy weather. When I was growing up, it used to be that people would go shopping because the weather was lousy, so I don’t know how much of this poor retail sales figure should be attributed to rain. People shop from late November through Christmas and that’s about the lousiest weather of the year, yet sales are at their highest level. Many people are seeing hundreds of thousands lose their jobs each month, so I would think that’s more of a drag on sales than a few showers.
– The nation’s retailers were already reeling from the new consumer frugality but in June, incessant rain and rising unemployment further dampened sales. Stores that had made strides in recent months reverted to double-digit declines.
Overall, the industry posted a 6.7 percent decline in sales for the month, in contrast to a 3.9 percent increase a year ago, according to the Goldman Sachs Retail Composite Index. Wal-Mart, which had been a bright spot in the retailing world and helped lift the overall industry number, is no longer reporting monthly sales. Retailers are also facing challenging year-over-year sales comparisons because this June there were no tax rebate checks to help bolster shopping.
Mike: I prefer the way some British present the facts, since they don’t do the gloss-over that most US “experts” seem to present. The US megaphone is that the stimulus will create enough jobs to stop employment losses and that companies that are receiving million and even billions in taxpayer money will use that cash to create millions of jobs, instead of continuing to off-shore hundreds of thousands of jobs. UK also had a large stimulus package of about $38 billion, which while smaller per person than that of the US stimulus is still a rather large package, but it doesn’t seem to be creating the jobs expected. Maybe the US stimulus package will create those promised jobs, but it’s not going to happen quickly enough for the American public.
– Britain’s jobs market is continuing to deteriorate as demand weakens across all sectors, the UK’s largest recruitment firm Hays has warned.
It said demand for jobs had fallen further across both the permanent and temporary sectors after a tough past three months.
The group has had to close 15 UK & Ireland offices and slash its own workforce by another 5% in the quarter to June 30, bringing the headcount reduction for the full year to 26%.
Hays said it had seen some signs of stabilisation in the City recruitment market as big banks cherry-pick the best teams after the recent slew of redundancies seen in the financial crisis.
But the trend is likely to be a short-term blip, according to Hays.
Gee, who woulda thunk?
– -WASHINGTON — U.S. engineering unemployment soared to a record in the second quarter of 2009, nearly doubling on a quarterly basis to 8.6 percent, the IEEE-USA said Tuesday (July 7), citing government figures.
The previous quarterly record for joblessness among U.S. electrical and electronic engineers was 7 percent, reached in October 2003.
– SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – A report shows the state has laid off 71 employees since lawmakers first started cutting the budget last fall.
– Dr. Hugo Ferlito lost his position as clinical director after serving in that capacity for 21 months. That position was one of six eliminated July 1 when Dientes reduced staffing from 38 to 32 employees in response to the state’s elimination of dental services for adult Medi-Cal beneficiaries statewide, including nearly 19,000 in Santa Cruz County.
– WILMINGTON | PPD Inc. is laying off “fewer than 80” people at its Wilmington headquarters as part of a work force reduction of 270 across North America.
PPD spokeswoman Louise Caudle said Wednesday that “while we have a strong backlog of global business demand for our services, demand in North America has been lower than we had expected.”
Mike: OK, so the feds are “talking” about a health care plan that is likely to be a watered down corporate giveaway that lacks any kind of universal component and this hospital is blaming those “talks” for its layoffs! Talk about the hospital (and the reporter) putting the death spin on “health care for all” BEFORE the legislation is even presented is amazing. The PR types at this hospital are getting a jump start on the “health care for all kills jobs and corporate profits” train. Other hospitals are likely to follow this job scare routine to make sure that heath care for all is DOA in the US senate. Congress will do its usual shuffle and universal health care will die at the drawing board because the corporate powers of the large health insurers, pharmaceuticals and hospitals will put the “we won’t contribute to your campaign” fear into the ears of a pathetic, spineless congress.
– AUGUSTA, Ga. – A new proposed government health care plan is one of the reasons University Hospital has laid off 30 employees.
The hospital is bracing for more than $100 million in cuts.
– AGCO Corp. of Hesston says it will lay off 154 hourly workers this Friday in response to a slumping agriculture market and world economy.
– SENECA, S.C. – A company that makes hospital supplies has laid off 119 workers at its South Carolina plant.
– CINCINNATI — The Cincinnati Enquirer laid off 100 employees Wednesday, including the entire staff of CiN Weekly, as part of a corporate-wide cutback by its parent company.
– AMES, Iowa (AP) — At least 200 workers will take early retirement as the school deals with budget shortfalls, according to Iowa State University.
– OKLAHOMA CITY — Four workers at American Heart Association offices in Tulsa and Oklahoma City have been laid off as part of staff reductions.
– At least 20 journalists were laid off Wednesday at The Arizona Republic in the latest round of job cuts issued by the nation’s largest newspaper chain, Gannett Co. Inc., sources close to the paper confirmed.
– NEW ORLEANS – UNO will eliminate nine senior administration positions, including two vice chancellors and two dean positions and will not fill 20 vacant faculty positions as they meet the reduced budget allocated to them by the state this year.
– Steelmaker Corus has confirmed plans to cut a further 366 jobs at its plant in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire.
– BUDAPEST, July 9 (Reuters) – Japanese car parts supplier Denso Corp will lay off up to 800 workers at its Hungarian plant by the end of September, national news agency MTI reported on Thursday, citing the company.
-Approximately 80 employees will be laid off. Michelin is providing severance packages for the employees and is working with the employees to help them make a transition, said Tate Hoxworth, Michelin spokesman said.
– 177 employees of Telecom Fiji LTD stand to lose their jobs in the coming months.
via FBCL – News .
– Mondi said that some 240 employees might be affected by its organisational alignment, which represented around 4,1% of Mondi’s permanent employee complement in South Africa.
– Photronics Inc. said Wednesday it would close its manufacturing facility in Shanghai, cutting 75 jobs.
– Ten Coffee Republic coffee and deli outlets have closed with the loss of 66 jobs, administrators for the firm have confirmed.
– Franco-American telecoms equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent (ALUA.PA) plans to cut an additional 1,000 jobs in France in 2009 and 2010, union representative Marc Marandon told Reuters on Thursday.
– U.S. Steel’s (X.N) Serbian unit is to shed up to 250 administrative jobs as demand for its products has plumetted amidst the global economic downturn, the local company’s spokesman said on Thursday.
– Fluor Corp. expects to add more than 100 jobs in Greenville as the result of new work to build and operate military bases in Afghanistan.
– Liberty National Life Insurance Co. has opened three branches in the Charlotte area and plans to hire about 300 workers in sales and management positions.
– The company wants to create 100 jobs over the next five years and carry an average annual payroll of more than $3 million.