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Report: U.S. Job Cuts Jump 33 Percent

Employers announced plans to cut 95,094 jobs in September -- 33 percent more than a year ago -- according to a report by job placement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

CHICAGO (AP) -- Job cuts announced by U.S. employers in September jumped 33 percent from a year ago without yet reflecting fallout from the latest turmoil on Wall Street, according to a report released Wednesday.

The report by job placement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas said it may take several weeks or months for employment figures to show consequences from the shakeup that reverberated through the economy last month.

"We have financial institutions being bailed out by the government, some are being acquired by other banks and others are being seized and liquidated. While all of these scenarios are being played out, the fate of the workers remains in limbo," said John Challenger, the firm's chief executive.

Employers announced plans to cut 95,094 jobs in September, according to the report. That was up 7.2 percent from August and 33 percent higher than September 2007, when 71,739 job cuts were announced.

Last month's total trailed only those of May and July in 2008 and pushed the third-quarter layoff figure to 287,142, the highest quarterly toll since the fourth quarter of 2005. Jobs cuts announced in the quarter were up 48 percent from the 194,095 disclosed in the same period a year ago, the report said.

Despite the collapse of several Wall Street firms and other dramatic events in the financial markets last month, only 8,244 job cuts were announced in that sector during the month.

The most planned cuts came from the computer industry, where computer maker Hewlett-Packard Co. said it intends to cut 24,600 jobs over the next three years as it integrates technology-services firm Electronic Data Systems Corp.

Challenger said the fate of the bailout package and other unfolding events will determine how much job cut totals surge in the near future.

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