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Planned job cuts by Illinois employers fall in October

Updated: December 3, 2012 6:35AM



Planned job cut announcements by Illinois-based employers dropped 46 percent in October from September, according to the latest report from Chicago-based outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas that showed such announcements rose nationally.

Illinois-based employers announced plans to cut 1,191 jobs last month, down from 2,191 in September and down 49 percent from 2,326 in October 2011.

The biggest cuts announced last month were by health care products company Abbott Laboratories, which announced 550 planned cuts; BRP US Inc., a consumer products company that announced 310 cuts; and Book Wholesalers Inc., which announced 110 cuts.

Nationally, job cut announcements surged 41 percent to 47,724, the highest level since May. But layoff announcements for the year are still down 17 percent from the same period in 2011.

In Illinois, job cut announcements are up 6.5 percent for the first ten months of the year, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Last month, a big part of the cuts by U.S. employers took place in Europe, where Ford announced it was closing a plant in Belgium that will hit 9,500 workers and said it would layoff 1,400 workers in the United Kingdom.

“While the Ford job cuts are not impacting American workers, they indicate just how vulnerable companies in the U.S. are to the situation in Europe,” John Challenger, chief executive officer of the firm, said in a statement.

An increase in jobs cuts nationally could be in store for the remainder of the year.

“The final three months of the year tend to see heavier downsizing activity as companies make year-end adjustments to meet earnings goals and to prepare for the new year,” Challenger noted.



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