U.S. Layoffs Up 76%...
"The U.S. housing market is cooling down after sharp price gains in recent years, with existing home sales dropping for the fourth month in July. This is in line with slowing economic growth."
'"There are some signs that the housing slowdown is taking a toll on jobs," said John A. Challenger, chief executive of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. "Job-cutting in real estate this year is nearly double last year."
"Planned U.S. layoffs surged 76 percent in August compared with the previous month amid signs that a slowdown in housing was starting to have an impact on employment, an independent report showed Tuesday."
"Announced layoffs in August totaled 65,278 jobs, compared with a six-year low of 37,178 in July, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., an employment consulting firm. It was the only second time this year that monthly job cuts have increased."
"The report said the surge in planned layoffs might also be a signal of an early start to year-end cuts as companies start implementing 2007 payroll plans."
"In the year to date, "Downsizing is well off the pace we have seen in recent years, indicating that the job market is strong in terms of providing more job security," said Challenger."
"However, "the pool of skilled candidates is getting shallow and, as a result, companies simply are not hiring despite the healthy economy."'
"The computer industry was the hardest-hit sector in August, with 17,371 job losses, followed by the automotive sector with 7,639 layoffs."