Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Firms cut pay, hold off on layoffs

A majority of U.S. companies are using salary reductions or freezes instead of layoffs to lower their costs, according to a survey by Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.

More than half (52.4 percent) of human-resources executives surveyed in May reported their firms had instituted salary cuts or freezes. That’s up from the 27.2 percent who reported similar cutbacks in January.

At the same time, the percentage of employers making permanent cuts fell from 56 percent in January to 43 percent in May, the survey found.

Companies reported using various methods to improve their bottom lines, including salary cuts, cutting workers’ hours, reducing or eliminating tuition reimbursements, furloughs or forced vacations, and temporary layoffs.

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