Oil-Related Job Cuts Wane

Employers announced plans to shed 41,034 workers from their payrolls in May, following the 61,582 planned job cuts announced in April, according to a report issued by Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

May’s announced job cuts were 23 percent lower than the 52,961 planned job cuts announced in May 2014. In the first five months of 2015, employers announced 242,830 job cuts, 13 percent more than the first five months of 2014.

The number of oil-related job cuts appear to be declining, as 1,019 planned job cuts were attributed to the fall in oil prices in May, compared to 20,675 the previous month.

“Oil prices are starting to stabilize. Exploration and extraction companies responded quickly to the drop in prices, but they are likely to be careful about cutting too deeply, as they will need workers on hand when demand inevitably increases. Unless, there is another severe drop in the price of oil, we probably will not see another surge in oil-related job cuts this year,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

The financial sector and the government had the largest number of job cuts, announcing 5,539 and 5,502 cuts, respectively.