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Challenger: 50,504 job cuts in October

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Challenger: 50,504 job cuts in October

Year-to-date total 31% higher than last year.

According to a monthly report from outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, the nation’s employers announced plans to eliminate 50,504 workers from their payrolls in October. More than one-quarter of those were oil-related job cuts, which climbed to a six-month high.

October job cuts were 14% lower than the 58,877 cuts announced in September. They were down 1.3% from October 2014, when 51,183 job cuts were recorded.

“Despite the surge in job cuts across several sectors, it is hardly time to panic."

Employers have now announced 543,935 job cuts so far in 2015. That is 31% more than the 414,591 cuts announced by this point in 2014. The year-to-date total is, in fact, 13% higher than the 2014 year-end total (483,171).

Nearly one in five job cuts announced this year have been the result of low oil prices. In October, oil prices were blamed for 13,671 job cuts, 27% of all cuts announced during the month. That is the highest oil-related job-cut total since April, when 20,675 job cuts were attributed to oil.

Overall, oil prices are responsible for 101,383 job cuts in 2015. Several companies have experienced multiple workforce reductions throughout the year. For example, Chevron announced a second round of cuts in October, while Halliburton, Schlumberger and Baker Hughes have each reported at least two separate layoff events in 2015. 

Due to the resurgence in oil-related job cuts, the energy sector saw the highest number of planned layoffs last month, with 17,344. That is more than triple the second-ranked retail sector, which announced 5,153 job cuts in October.

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