Job Losses Surge, Recession Deepens
U.S. job losses worst since 1974 as downturn deepens
News continues to get worse after the government finally made our current recession “official”. The U.S. Labor Department has announced that 533,000 jobs were cut during the month of November, the biggest monthly cut in 34 years—with analysts fearing that the 11-month trend of increasing job loss will worsen even further.
US employers axed 533,000 jobs in November, the biggest monthly cut in 34 years, the US Labor Department said.
In a dramatic indication of the worsening situation in the economy, the US jobless rate rose to a 15-year high of 6.7% from 6.5% in October.
Since these latest figures were compiled, further jobs losses have been announced, including big cuts at AT&T.
Recent weak economic data has fuelled fears that the world’s biggest economy is set for a deep, long downturn.
U.S. employers axed payrolls by 533,000 jobs in November, the most in 34 years, as the year-old recession hammered the economy and hardened calls for dramatic government action to turn the tide.
The Labor Department on Friday said the unemployment rate hit 6.7 percent last month, the highest since 1993, which adds up to 10.3 million Americans out of work or 2 million more than the population of New York City.
The jobless rate, which stood at 6.5 percent in October, would have been even higher but for people leaving the labor force in discouragement over their search for work.
A slew of U.S. companies have announced jobs cuts this week, including phone giant AT&T, which said on Thursday it was letting 12,000 workers go, and economists expect the unemployment rate to top 8 percent by late next year.
"You can't get much uglier than this. The economy has just collapsed, and has gone into a free fall," said Richard Yamarone, chief economist at Argus Research in New York.
Big jobs losses point to deepening recession
Employers shed a worse-than-expected 533,000 jobs in November, the Labor Department reported Friday, the biggest monthly jobless number in 34 years and indisputable evidence that the U.S. recession is worsening.
Adding insult to injury, the Bureau of Labor Statistics revised upwards its previous jobless reports, noting employers in October actually sent 320,000 workers packing instead of the 240,000 first reported. And September job losses were actually 403,000 and not the 284,000 stated in that month's report.
November's numbers were the worst since December 1974, when employers lopped off 602,000 positions in response to tightening credit and government price controls designed to quash inflation.
In a separate employment survey Friday, the government said the nation's unemployment rate ticked up to 6.7 percent in November, from 6.5 percent the prior month. This was slightly better than consensus expectations but reflected a large number of people no longer looking for work and thus out of the workforce. Still, the unemployment rate is now the highest in 15 years.
Taken with weak holiday sales numbers, slowing exports and the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, it's clear the U.S. economy is in deepening trouble. […]
"Job declines were widespread with losses in manufacturing, construction and retail, financial and business services. The only bright spots remaining are health care and education," said John Silvia, chief economist for Charlotte, N.C.-based Wachovia, in a note to investors. "Over the last year, the breadth of industries adding jobs has dropped sharply suggesting broad weakness in consumer spending and dismal consumer confidence."
Looking forward, it seems unlikely that recovery is anywhere around the corner.