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Layoffs Not an Option for Some US Companies


Revenue may be down and the pressure to slash costs intense, but some U.S. companies say job cuts are not an option. Companies that have avoided layoffs amid this recession are the exception, not the rule. U.S. employers have cut 5.1 million jobs since the recession began, including 663,000 last month alone. But some are looking to shave costs while keeping their work forces intact, so that when the economy does turn around, they’ll be ready to ratchet up production again.

Economists say that’s a wise move. “If you overshoot on the downside and lay off workers, it puts the company at a disadvantage when the economy comes back to life,” said Sean Snaith, economics professor at the University of Central Florida.

Costco Wholesale’s [COST  44.16    -1.61  (-3.52%)   ] profit is down 27 percent year-over-year, but the discount store has not laid anyone off, choosing instead to freeze hiring at its corporate offices. The only workers let go have been holiday seasonal hires.

The company says it recognizes that labor remains its most valuable — if costliest — resource.

Casino operator Wynn Resorts [WYNN  30.05    -2.71  (-8.27%)   ] is trimming pay and cutting back on retirement fund matches. Credit agency Equifax [EFX  26.20    -1.09  (-3.99%)   ] froze pay for all U.S. employees for 2009 and at some of its foreign offices as well.

Marvin Windows and Doors, a Minnesota company, has not laid off any of its 5,300 workers — despite the collapse of the housing market. Its sales were flat in 2008 and have fallen this year.

Read the entire article at

04/22/2009 - Posted by | hiring | , , , ,

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