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Reports show employment up, but so are layoffs



U.S. private-sector employers added more jobs than expected in September, but another report Wednesday showed a jump in planned layoffs in the month, Reuters reported. Private payrolls rose by 91,000 according to payroll processor Automatic Data Processing Inc., above expectations for a gain of 75,000 in a Reuters poll.


August private payrolls were revised down to an increase of 89,000 from the previously reported 91,000.


But the number of planned layoffs at U.S. firms in September jumped to its highest level in more than two years due to heavy cutbacks by the U.S. military and Bank of America Corp., another report on Wednesday showed. Employers announced 115,730 planned job cuts last month, more than double August’s total of 51,114, according to the report from consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.


The figure was the highest since April 2009, when 132,590 layoffs were announced.


September’s job cuts were also much higher than the same time a year ago, tripling from the 37,151 job cuts announced in September 2010. In 2011 so far, employers have announced 479,064 cuts, up 16.5 percent from the first nine months of 2010.


The data comes ahead of Friday’s monthly report on total U.S. nonfarm payrolls from the U.S. Labor Department, which is expected to see a gain of 60,000 jobs last month, according to a Reuters survey, after being unchanged in August.


“It looks like we’re still seeing the private sector create jobs, which is consistent with a slow-growing economy,” said Gary Thayer, chief macroeconomic strategist at Wells Fargo Advisors in St. Louis.


“The problem is the government sector is cutting jobs,” Thayer said. “So it looks like we’ll get a weak, but slightly positive, jobs number Friday.”

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