© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Hundreds of people stand outside a Kentucky Career Center hoping to find help with their unemployment claims in Frankfurt
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. employers announced another 115,762 job cuts in August, led by ailing airlines as the COVID-19 pandemic impacts travel expenses and government funding.
Though layoffs at global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas were down 56% on Thursday from July, they have pushed total layoffs this year to a record 1.963 million. The previous all-time high in 2001 was 1.957 million. Companies announced 160,411 hiring intentions in August.
"The leading sector of the downsizing last month was transportation as airlines make hiring decisions due to reduced travel and unsafe federal intervention," said Andrew Challenger, senior vice president, Challenger, Gray. "More and more companies that originally cut jobs temporarily or took leave of absence are now
make them permanent. "
The report followed on Wednesday news that private employers hired fewer workers than expected in August. The weak data increases the risk of a further slowdown in employment growth in August.
The Department of Labor will release its closely monitored and more comprehensive monthly employment report on Friday. According to a Reuters poll of economists, the non-farm workforce is likely to have increased 1.4 million jobs in August, from 1.763 million in July.
Government support to workers and employers has resulted in a strong recovery in economic activity, but its flow in recent weeks has shaken the recovery from the depths of the coronavirus crisis.
United Airlines (O 🙂 announced Wednesday that it was preparing to take 16,370 workers off on October 1. The airlines received $ 25 billion in government stimulus programs in March that will cover payroll and protect jobs through September.
Transport companies announced 26,545 job cuts in August, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas. The number rose to 131,571 positions this year, which corresponds to an increase of 482% compared to the period from January to August 2019.
Another 17,271 layoffs were announced in bars, restaurants, hotels and amusement parks in August. Entertainment and leisure companies announced 799,051 job cuts this year.
Employers continued to blame poor market conditions, weak demand and cost cutting for layoffs in August.
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