Slumping home sales and a credit crunch led to massive layoffs in the lending and financial sectors in 2007, but the number of announced job cuts in all industries actually declined. The number of announced job cuts in 2007 -- 768,264 -- represented an 8.5 percent reduction from 2006, and the lowest since the year 2000, according to outplacement consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc. Because the Chicago-based firm tracks only publicly announced layoffs, its numbers are not comprehensive but provide an indication of industry trends. Mortgage lenders announced 86,126 job cuts in 2007, more than six times the number announced in 2006. The wave of job cuts among mortgage lenders spread to investment firms that gambled on high-risk loans as investment vehicles, Challenger said. The 153,105 job cuts announced by financial sector companies in 2007 beat the previous record of 116,515 in 2001 by 31 percent, and was more than double than the 78,880 layoffs announced in th...
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