Philadelphia to close libraries, pools, cut jobs

Mayor says city among many facing large budget shortfalls in bad economy

PHILADELPHIA – The city will close libraries and swimming pools, suspend planned tax reductions, cut more than 800 jobs and trim salaries for some administrators in order to weather “an economic storm” that could leave the city with a $1 billion shortfall, Mayor Michael Nutter said Thursday.

Nutter outlined the drastic budget cuts in a live, 10-minute televised address – a rarity that represented an attempt to convey the dire nature of the city’s financial situation.

“The city must prepare for the worst,” Nutter said. “Painful program and service cuts are necessary.”

The city is facing a deficit of $108 million this year, and the shortfall could grow to more than $1 billion by 2013, Nutter said.

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Jobs lost in 2008: 1.2 million

Payrolls shrink by 240,000 in October, 10th straight month of cuts. Unemployment soars to 6.5%

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NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — The government reported more grim news about the economy Friday, saying employers cut 240,000 jobs in October – bringing the year’s total job losses to nearly 1.2 million.

According to the Labor Department’s monthly jobs report, the unemployment rate rose to 6.5% from 6.1% in September and higher than economists’ forecast of 6.3%. It was the highest unemployment rate since March 1994.

“There is so much bad in this report that it is hard to find any silver lining,” said Morgan Keegan analyst Kevin Giddis.

Economists surveyed by Briefing.com had forecast a loss of 200,000 jobs in the month. October’s monthly job loss total was less than September’s revised loss of 284,000. Payroll cuts in August were revised up to 127,000, which means more than half of this year’s job losses have occurred in the last three months.

September had the largest monthly job loss total since November 2001, the last month of the previous recession and just two months after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

With 1,179,000 cuts, the economy has lost more than a million jobs in a year for the first time since 2001 – the last time the economy was in a recession. With most economic indicators signaling even more difficult times ahead, job losses will likely deepen and continue through at least the first half of 2009.

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Citigroup, Goldman Said to Begin Eliminating More Than 12000 Jobs

Nov. 6 (Bloomberg) — Citigroup Inc. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., faced with a weakening economy and the prospect of mounting losses, began firing workers as part of the firms’ plans to cut more than 12,000 jobs, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Goldman, which converted last month from the biggest U.S. securities firm into a commercial bank, yesterday began telling about 3,200 employees, or 10 percent of its workforce, they were out of a job, according to one of the people who declined to be identified because the decisions were confidential.

Citigroup has been notifying staff this week who are affected by the bank’s plan to discard 9,100 positions over the next 12 months, or about 2.6 percent of its headcount, another person said.

The ousted workers add to the swelling ranks of Wall Street’s unemployed, their lives upended by the credit crisis. Both New York-based firms have already cut staff, and are among the banks and brokerages worldwide that have shed almost 150,000 jobs since the subprime mortgage market collapsed last year. Led by Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman said in April it would fire more after culling about 1,500 underperformers. Vikram Pandit, Citigroup’s CEO, shed 12,900 over the past year.

“We haven’t hit bottom yet,” said Henry Higdon, managing partner at Higdon Partners LLC, a New York-based search firm specializing in financial services. “They have to adjust the size of their businesses to the realities, not only today, but what it’s going to look like in the next two or three years.”

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U.S. Stocks Post Biggest Post-Election Drop on Economic Concern


Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York, Nov. 5, 2008. Photographer: Ramin Talaie/Bloomberg News

Nov. 5 (Bloomberg) — The stock market posted its biggest plunge following a presidential election as reports on jobs and service industries stoked concern the economy will worsen even as President-elect Barack Obama tries to stimulate growth.

Citigroup Inc. tumbled 14 percent and Bank of America Corp. lost 11 percent as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index and Dow Jones Industrial Average sank more than 5 percent. Nucor Corp., the largest U.S.-based steel producer, slid 10 percent after bigger rival ArcelorMittal doubled production cuts amid slowing demand. Boeing Co., the world’s second-largest commercial planemaker, lost 6.9 percent after UBS AG forecast a 3 percent drop in global air traffic next year.

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US motor industry: The great breakdown

Such is the severity of the downturn in the global car industry that US manufacturers are now pushing for their own state bailout.

Why stop at the banks? Now governments around the world are pouring taxpayer money in to bail out loss-making financial institutions, it is getting harder to argue against subsidies, loans, guarantees and other forms of government assistance for other industries, too – particularly since the economic pain is now being felt far from Wall Street.

Which is why Rick Wagoner, chief executive of General Motors, the largest US carmaker, packed his suitcase for Washington and headed to the capital again this week. He is leading a lobbying push aimed at tapping taxpayers and staving off the bankruptcy of the loss-making company. GM’s coffers are being depleted at a rate of $1bn a month, and will run dry by the end of next summer. Little wonder its shares have touched levels not seen since it emerged from the Great Depression.

GM – owner of the Vauxhall brand and Chevrolet, amongst others – is in the throes of merger talks with its smaller rival Chrysler, which is also haemorrhaging cash. The hope is a merger will save money, allowing them to close more factories and cut more jobs. The trouble is, things are so desperate they don’t have the cash to write the redundancy cheques. They are asking for up to $10bn in low-cost loans to tide them over.

So here we are, on the brink of Bail-out II: Detroit.

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Goldman to Cut 10% of Jobs as Downsizing Wave Grows


The Goldman Sachs Tower dominates the Jersey City, N.J. skyline.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is preparing to cut about 10% of its 32,500 employees, according to people familiar with the matter, a sign of deepening job losses on Wall Street.

The cuts, expected throughout the New York-based company, underscore how much even the mightiest securities firms have been shaken by the 16-month credit crisis. Despite avoiding the catastrophic mistakes that sank Bear Stearns Cos. and Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., Goldman is suffering from the drought in investment banking and trading.

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Yahoo Reports Profit Drop, Plans to Cut 10% of Jobs

Oct. 21 (Bloomberg) — Yahoo! Inc., the Internet company that rejected a takeover offer from Microsoft Corp., reported a 64 percent drop in profit and announced plans to cut at least 10 percent of its staff after advertising spending slowed.

Third-quarter net income fell to $54.3 million, or 4 cents a share, from $151.3 million, or 11 cents, a year earlier, Yahoo said today in a statement. Sales, excluding fees passed on to partner sites, rose 3 percent to $1.33 billion.

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Merrill Chief Thain Expects Thousands of Job Cuts

Oct. 20 (Bloomberg) — Merrill Lynch & Co. Chief Executive Officer John Thain said he expects “thousands” of job losses from the bank’s $50 billion takeover by Bank of America Corp.

Most of the cuts will fall in information technology, operations and “corporate functions,” Thain, 53, said in a Bloomberg Television interview in Dubai today. Jobs in the fixed income and commodities divisions won’t be eliminated after the deal, he said.

“We haven’t mapped it out in terms of actual number of people, but we are committed to saving $7 billion across the combined platforms, and that will be a challenge,” Thain said. “Between our two companies it will be clearly thousands of jobs.”

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Unemployment to hit three million within a year as it rises at fastest rate for 17 years


Cuts: Unemployment rose by 164,000 in the three months up to August and could hit two million by Christmas as the credit crunch hits home

Unemployment could hit three million by the end of next year to levels not seen since John Major was in power as Britain battles recession, it was warned today.

The rate is already at its highest level for almost a decade after soaring more than 10 per cent in the past three months to 1.79million.

In its biggest rise since 1991, 164,000 people lost their jobs in June, July and August. Last month alone, more than 31,000 people signed up to claim the dole.

Vicky Redwood from Capital Economics believes this is just the tip of the iceberg and that unemployment could eventually hit three million as the slowdown deepens.

‘With the UK heading into recession, we expect this measure to rise by a total of 1.5 million to around three million or nine percent by the end of 2010,’ she said.

Read moreUnemployment to hit three million within a year as it rises at fastest rate for 17 years