November 18, 2005
In the third quarter of 2005, employers took 742 mass layoff actions that resulted in the separation of 136,280 workers from their jobs for at least 31 days.
Both the total number of layoff events and the number of separations were sharply lower than during the July-September 2004 time period and were at their lowest levels for any third quarter since data collection began in 1995.
Data now available reflect early results of contact with employers who had potential layoffs in September that could have been directly or indirectly related to Hurricane Katrina. In Louisiana, there were 684 such actions reported in September; in Mississippi, there were 96.
In the limited amount of time available to contact those employers, 27 employers in Louisiana confirmed that they had layoffs due to Hurricane Katrina that lasted more than 30 days and resulted in 5,893 workers losing their jobs. The reported number of extended mass layoff events attributed to the hurricanes in the Gulf states is likely to rise as more employers are contacted.
These data are from the Mass Layoff Statistics program. "Extended mass layoffs" last more than 30 days and involve 50 or more individuals from a single establishment filing initial claims for unemployment insurance during a consecutive 5-week period. Data for the third quarter of 2005 are preliminary and subject to revision. Additional information is available in "Extended Mass Layoffs in the Third Quarter of 2005" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 05-2194.