Announced layoffs swung higher last month, rising to about 51,000 in October, bouncing up from a 14-year low in September, according to data released Thursday by outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas. Led by retail job cuts, October's announced layoffs were up 68% from 30,000 in September and 12% from 46,000 announced cuts in October 2013. "The October figure may mark the kick-off to a fourth-quarter surge in job cuts," said Chief Executive John Challenger. "It is not unusual to see the pace of downsizing accelerate in the final months of the year, as employers take measures to meet year-end earnings and profit goals." Employers have announced about 415,000 cuts this year, down 4% from the same period in 2013.
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