79,000 People Lost Their Jobs Last Month, Up 400% Year Over Year

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Everyone expected more job losses in November, but the size of the increase may not have been expected. Outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas reported Thursday morning that U.S.-based employers fired 78,835 workers last month, an increase of 127% month over month and 417% year over year.

Job losses so far in 2022 total 320,173, a year-over-year increase of 6%. The tech sector accounted for two-thirds of November’s firings. November’s total is the highest for the sector since Challenger, Gray began keeping records in 2000 and is the highest total since 2002 when tech companies chopped 128,563 jobs during the dot-com bust. Job losses in the tech sector are more than 500% higher so far this year than in 2021.

Excepting the carnage in the pandemic-related layoffs in the travel and leisure industry in 2020, the last time any sector cut this many jobs was 2015, when the U.S. Army announced a three-year plan to cut more than 40,000 troops.

Andrew Challenger, senior vice president at Challenger, Gray commented, “The Tech sector has announced the most job cuts this year by far. While other industries are cutting jobs at a slower pace, hiring appears to have slowed as well.” The company’s year-to-date data indicates that U.S. companies have announced plans to hire 1.43 million workers, compared to plans for hiring 1.75 million at the same point last year.

Auto industry workers also have been hit hard with job losses. More than 30,000 autoworkers have lost their jobs in the first 11 months of this year, a year-over-year increase of almost 200%.

Rising mortgage rates and inflation have led to nearly 8,000 job losses in the real estate industry, an increase of 187% compared to 2021’s losses in the sector.

Fintech, an industry counted independently of either tech or financial services, has lost 8,152 jobs so far this year, compared to losses totaling 592 at the same point last year. That is an increase of 1,272%. Challenger, Gray noted that fintech companies announced job cuts totaling 1,453 in November.

Late Wednesday, crypto exchange Kraken announced that it would fire 1,100 people and earlier this week, BlockFi said it would cut 250 jobs. According to Challenger, Gray data, fintech companies announced hiring plans for 700 additional employees in November, pushing the year-to-date total for new hiring in the industry to nearly 5,100. How many of those employees eventually will be hired is anyone’s guess.

For the year to date, California has lost 103,433 jobs, nearly four times as many as runner-up New York.

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