GE Ranks First in 2017 Downsizing After 12,000 More Job Cuts

Updated on
  • Consumer and industrial sectors have seen biggest reductions
  • Energy companies are stabilizing after 2016 job losses
GE to Cut 12,000 Jobs in Power Business

General Electric Co. already has the distinction of being the worst performer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average this year. Now it’s taken the lead among U.S. companies in announcing the most job cuts.

The beleaguered manufacturer has eliminated a total of 14,742 jobs in 2017, including Thursday’s news that it would reduce its power-business workforce by 12,000. The reduction pushed GE past General Motors Inc., which has announced a series of cuts throughout the year amid slow auto demand and growing inventories.

Macy’s Inc. occupies the third spot on the list. The retailer kicked 2017 off by slashing 10,000 jobs and closing 68 stores after an underwhelming holiday shopping season.

Macy’s hasn’t been the only retailer to downsize in 2017. The consumer cyclical sector, which includes retail, charted the biggest cuts overall of any industry as stores grapple with the growth of e-commerce and the so-called retail apocalypse.

GE stock has fallen 44 percent this year as of 3:45 p.m. Thursday in New York. That’s the worst performance by far of any member of the the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The index is up 22 percent.

As job losses pile up at GE and GM, many of those cuts are taking place overseas. Friday’s U.S. job report is projected to show an increase in payrolls, while the unemployment rate continues to hold at an almost 17-year low of 4.1 percent.

Though President Donald Trump campaigned on bringing jobs back to the U.S., growth remains on pace with the final year of his predecessor’s administration.

Energy companies, which claimed the top spot for job losses in 2016, now rank seventh among all sectors this year.

— With assistance by Alexandre Tanzi

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