Friday, October 26, 2012

Layoffs rise as more companies are downsizing

Just when it looked as if the economy was upsizing, more companies are downsizing. A mounting number of companies, including many tech firms, have been announcing layoffs, prompting some to worry about the proliferation of pink slips amid third-quarter earnings reports showing nearly zero growth.

"We've seen a spate of bad earnings announcements," says John Challenger of outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas. "Companies often take fast action," which results in job cuts.

Colgate-Palmolive was the most recent example Thursday, with plans to cut 2,300 jobs. But that announcement just piled on top of similar revelations from firms such as online game company Zynga, heavy equipment maker Caterpillar, computer chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices and chemical firm DuPont in recent weeks.

Early data point to a disturbing rise in layoffs, as seen by:

-- Recent uptick in layoffs. Companies in North America announced plans to cut more than 62,000 jobs since Sept. 1, says Bloomberg News. That's the biggest two-month slashing of jobs since the beginning of 2010. Read more >>

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