Employers announced plans to cut 33,627 jobs in December, according to a report issued by Challenger, Gray & Christmas. December’s announced cuts were 25% higher than November’s. For the year, employers have announced 526,915 job cuts, down 12% from 2015.
The steepest job cuts for the year occurred in the energy sector, which announced 107,714 layoffs over 2016. Most of these cuts were announced in the first half of the year, as the industry suffered from historically low oil prices. However, as oil prices started to recover, job cuts declined.
“Oil prices are back on the rise. The new administration poised to take over the White House in January could further benefit the industry by relaxing regulations and drilling restrictions. Oil companies may once again start to expand in 2017. Ironically, the only obstacle in their way may be a shortage of skilled workers,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
The computer industry also saw a rise in job cuts. Firms announced 66,821 job cuts during the year, 7.4% more than in 2015. The industry faces uncertainty moving forward.
“It is hard to say how the tech sector will do under the new administration. Many rely on offshoring as well as the employment of foreign talent immigrating to the U.S. Both of those business practices are likely to come under threat in the coming year. However, the new administration’s pro-business policies may ultimately favor these firms and many others. Only time will tell,” Challenger concluded.
Read the Challenger Gray & Christmas release.