Archive for the ‘Unemployment’ Category
Northeast Mississippi’s unemployment rate declined a second consecutive month in August, falling to to 9.4 percent.
The unemployment rate in Northeast Mississippi this year:
- January: 11.1 percent
- February: 9.7
- March: 10.1
- April: 8.5
- May :9.7
- June: 10.4
- July: 9.5
- August: 9.4
Earlier, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics said the state’s unemployment rate was 8.4 percent. It’s the lowest state jobless rate since February 2009. Mississippi’s unemployment rate had initially been estimated at 8.5 percent in July, but that was revised up to 8.6 percent. The state jobless rate was 9.3 percent in August 2012.
The numbers – adjusted to cancel out normal seasonal changes – revealed the unemployment drop was due to a shrinking labor force. That was the case In Northeast Mississippi, too.
In the region, Lafayette County (6.6 percent) had the lowest jobless rate, closely followed by Union County (6.7).
Ten of the 16 counties recorded rates under 10 percent. And from July to August, 10 counties had lower rates three had higher rates and the remaining three were unchanged.
Furniture Brands International has notified the state that it expects to lay off up to
Those facilities would be Lane Furniture, which has manufacturing plants in Belden and Saltillo, as well as an office and distribution center in Verona and another distribution center in Wren.
Furniture Brands also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today.
The layoffs could occur in mid-October. But a communications firm hired by Furniture Brands told Furniture Today that a final decision has not been made on the layoffs. So, let’s hope for the best.
In a memo to employees, Furniture Brands said regarding Lane, ”At this time, there are several interested parties who have indicated interest in acquiring that business. However, a sale is not guaranteed and we are exploring our options for Lane at this time.”
It also said it’s “business as usual” and the bankruptcy filing shouldn’t affect operations.
Furniture Brands hired restructuring advisers last month, shortly after posting a $41 million quarterly loss. The St. Louis-based company has not posted a profit since 2006, and sales have been cut in half since that time, to just over $1 billion last year.
It voluntarily delisted its shares from the New York Stock Exchange as well, and is trading over the counter.
The Community Development Foundation released the following:
Furniture Brands International has filed for bankruptcy and given official notice to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security Commission that over 1,400 employees are expected to be laid off from its Lane Furniture operations in Lee County.
“Today, many of our good, hard-working people have lost their jobs at no fault of their own with the layoff at Lane Furniture Industries,” stated Community Development Foundation (CDF) President and CEO, David Rumbarger. “Although we do not influence corporate decisions, we must now work hard to respond to these decisions by transitioning these displaced workers into re-employment.” Read the rest of this entry »
Huntington Ingalls Industries will close its Gulfport composites shipyard by May of next year, laying off as many as 315 of the 427 employees there, according to the Associated Press.
The Newport News, Va.-based company said the shutdown was necessary because of a reduction in work for the U.S. Navy’s Zumwalt-class destroyers.
Huntington Ingalls CEO President and CEO Mike Petter said the Navy has switched to steel for use in future ships.
According to the AP, the Gulfport facility has been building deckhouses out of carbon fiber materials and balsa wood cores for the guided missile destroyers, which are being assembled at General Dynamics Corp.’s Bath Iron Works shipyard in Maine. Because of the multibillion-dollar cost of each ship, the Navy cut its order to three and restarted production on an older class of destroyer. Then, earlier this year, the Navy decided to put a steel deckhouse on the third Zumwalt-class ship, the future Lyndon B. Johnson. Bath Iron Works announced Aug. 5 that it had won a $212 million contract for steel deckhouse, hangar and launching-system modules. Read the rest of this entry »
Premier Health Group of Tupelo, which includes Premier Radiology and Radiation Oncology of North Mississippi, said today it will shutter its billing company by the end of the year.
That division, Professional Accounts Management, will close Dec. 31, but PHG said it will help the employees find new jobs and provide them with a severance package and continued health care.
Here’s the full release from the company:
Due to decreasing reimbursements and increasing costs, Premier Health Group will close its billing company by year’s end.
“In light of the new mandated costs associated with the Affordable Care Act as well as the decreases in reimbursements by major insurers, we had to make the very difficult decision of reducing the size of our work force by outsourcing our billing,” said Lee Frans, Executive Director of Premier Health Group. “This was the very last step that we wanted to take and comes only after an extensive review of all our other options.” Read the rest of this entry »
Navistar Defense is idling its plant in West Point, putting 80 employees out of work July 5.
There was hope in April after it received an order for armored cabs (pictured here) would lead to additional work, but it appears sequestration has quashed those plans.
Here’s what Navistar had to say about the suspension of work at Navistar today, via the Associated Press:
Navistar Defense is suspending production at its plant in West Point.
Navistar spokeswoman Lauren McFarland said in a statement that the 80 workers at the plant were notified Thursday.
McFarland says the decision came in response to across-the-board federal budget reductions known as the sequester that went into effect on March 1.
“The sequester along with the pending drawdown of operations in Afghanistan, have led to a depleted order board, which requires us to make the difficult decision to suspend production at the West Point facility.
“We are navigating through a challenging environment in the defense industry, and this was a very difficult decision because Navistar values the workers. These are truly great people who have produced vehicles that make a difference, but the reality is the defense environment has changed significantly and as a business, Navistar has to change and adapt with it,” McFarland said.
The Associated Press, via the Daily Corinthian, says Plumrose USA in Booneville has laid off 100 workers at its meat slicing plant.
That’s about a quarter of the workforce at the plant, which now employs about 320 people.
Chief Operating Officer Mike Rozzano told the Daily Corinthian that workers were notified Friday.
Rozzano said business dictated that Plumrose didn’t need as many people in the plant.
Plumrose slices beef, pork and poultry sandwich meats. The meats are processed in Iowa and then brought to Booneville.
Rozzano says the decision should not be interpreted as a sign they have any intention of shuttering the facility.
The company is a processor of high-quality luncheon meats, bacon and deli products for distribution to major retailers such as Albertson’s, Safeway, Winn-Dixie and Walmart. Plumrose is headquartered in East Brunswick, N.J.
BancorpSouth Inc. could trim as much as 10 percent of its workforce through a voluntary early retirement program it says is part of the company’s efforts to cut costs and improve efficiency.
The company said it would take a one-time pretax charge of $8 million to $16 million, or 6 to 10 cents per share, during the second quarter. After that, BancorpSouth would save $7 million to $12 million a year, or 4 cents to 8 cents a share.
Reports surfaced earlier this week that the Tupelo-based financial holding company had identified employees within its 292-location, eight-state reach to make the offer. Arkansas Business said the voluntary retirement offer was extended to employees who were 60 and older with 10 consecutive years of service with the company. In its statement Wednesday, BancorpSouth only confirmed the offer had been made to 418 employees – about 10 percent of its workforce – “who were eligible because they met job classification, age and length-of-service criteria as of March 31, 2013.
However, BancorpSouth’s senior executive officers and other key employees were not eligible for the program.
Two years ago, the company announced a “branch optimization plan” that closed 22 offices in six states, affecting about 100 employees.
As of Wednesday, 296 of the 418 has responded to the voluntary early retirement offer, and 194 had accepted. Read the rest of this entry »