Layoffs decreased across all sectors in the first quarter of 2015. Services formed the majority of layoffs (1,900 or 54 percent), followed by manufacturing (900 0r 26 percent) and construction (700 or 20 percent).
Overall employment slowed in the first quarter of 2015 (300) compared to the seasonally high gains in the previous quarter (40,700) and also moderated from a year ago (28,300). The moderation in the first quarter of 2015 was more significant compared to previous years, due to a large decline in the retail, F&B and cleaning industries. Services employment slowed to 9,300 from 24,900 a year ago. Employment in manufacturing contracted more quickly (-6,400) than a previous year (-1,400) amid weakening exports. Construction employment also shrank (-2,800), in contrast to gains a year ago (4,700). These brought total employment to 3,642,200 in March 2015, which was 2.9 percent higher than a year ago and lower than the 3.7 percent in December 2014.
Some 3,500 workers were made redundant in the first quarter of 2015, fewer than in the preceding quarter (3,910), but still above the first quarter 2014 (3,110).