Challenger March 2022 Job Cuts Report
Published March 31, 2022
March Cuts Up 40% Over February
U.S.-based employers announced 21,387 cuts in March, up 40.3% from the 15,245 cuts announced in February. It is the highest monthly total since October 2021, when 22,822 cuts were announced, according to a report released Thursday from global outplacement and business and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
March’s total is 30% lower than the 30,603 cuts announced in the same month last year. In the first quarter of 2022, employers announced 55,696 cuts, down 62% from the 144,686 cuts announced through the same period in 2021. It is the lowest quarterly total since the third quarter of 2021, when 52,560 cuts were recorded.
“There appears to be a return of a healthier churn in the labor market,” said Andrew Challenger, Senior Vice President of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
“Some U.S. Employers report hiring is getting easier, particularly with the incentives many companies put in place to attract and retain talent. Meanwhile, inflation impacts and war concerns are causing workers who were depending on savings or investments to seek out paid employment,” he added.
Meanwhile, the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) showed the number of hires increased by 263,000 in February, while quits hovered near record-high at 2.9%.
Reasons for Cuts and Top Industries
Most (5,301) cuts in March were due to store, unit, or plant closing. Another 3,278 cuts were due to vaccine refusal, bringing the total number of cuts for this reason to 18,099 since June 2021. Of those, 14,422 were recorded in 2022.
For the fourth consecutive month, Health Care/Products, which includes hospitals, health care products manufacturers, and other care-related entities, announced the most job cuts with 4,995. For the year, companies in this sector have announced 13,923, up 161% from the 5,333 announced through the same period last year.
Financial services announced the second-most job cuts this year with 5,903, followed by the Services sector with 4,965. Warehousing companies announced 4,531 cuts in 2022.
Employers in the United States announced 105,224 hiring plans in March. The Government announced the highest number of hiring plans with 17,337, followed by Retail with 16,166. Food manufacturers and suppliers announced plans to hire 15,490 last month.
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The costs include hiking wages and offering show-up-for-your-first-day-of-
“There’s just intense competition for those workers willing to come in and work in-person jobs, and so companies are poaching them back and forth from each other,” he said.
Nearly 2 million people were working before the pandemic who aren’t now. That includes a lot of parents, especially mothers of young children.