The worst month for layoffs has arrived

As curtains close on the holiday season, historical data suggests that layoffs are right around the corner, The Wall Street Journal reported Dec. 16. 

January is the highest month for layoff and discharges, followed closely by December, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The trend began around 2000 as companies stopped fearing the social implications of leaving people jobless during the winter holidays, according to the Journal

One reason layoffs spike in January is the hike in seasonal labor during the latter months of the previous year; Retail, for example, is prone to this pattern. But for other industries, December marks the end of the fiscal year, making January an opportunity to adjust for the next. 

"[Business leaders] want to set up finances for success in 2023," J.P. Gownder, vice president and principal analyst for advisory firm Forrester Research Inc., told the Journal. "It’s a good bet that tech companies that haven't yet laid off employees are carefully considering whether or not to do so. It wouldn’t be surprising to see more layoffs in the next few weeks."

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