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August 2006

Conducting the Mass Layoff Statistics program: response and findings

Sharon P. Brown, Patrick Carey

The devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina created several data collection and analytical challenges for the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Mass Layoff Statistics program. This article details the efforts made to identify and track layoff activity related to Hurricane Katrina and provides some of the resulting information. Private nonfarm extended mass layoffs directly or indirectly related to Hurricane Katrina totaled 358 events and 57,551 separations over the September-December 2005 period. The highest number of worker separations in extended mass layoff events occurred in accommodation and food services, followed by retail trade and healthcare and social assistance.

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