Employers announced plans to cut 39,957 jobs in February, according to a report issued by Challenger, Gray & Christmas. February’s announced cuts were 19% less than January’s. The month’s figure was 40% lower than February 2016.
The retail sector once again led the way in job cuts, announcing 11,889 layoffs. The industry continues to move toward online and away from brick-and-mortar operations. Job cuts in retail are 580% more than the energy sector, which is the next highest so far this year.
“Retailers are experiencing a tremendous transformation from the traditional business model. The cost of digitizing merchandise, moving sales to online, and downsizing physical stores will likely take a toll on employees in this field,” said Andrew Challenger, vice president of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
The energy sector, on the other hand, has reported only 5,930 job cuts so far this year. This is an 87% decline in job cuts compared to this point last year.
“The energy sector announced over 107,000 jobs last year. It seems the bleeding has stopped for now. The new administration and EPA chief Scott Pruitt have already enacted legislation to aid oil & gas companies, but it remains to be seen if those actions will result in more jobs,” said Challenger.
Read the Challenger Gray & Christmas release.