Walt Disney Co, which reported record earnings in November, started an internal cost cutting review several weeks ago that may include layoffs at its studio and other units, three people with knowledge of the effort told Reuters.
Disney, whose empire spans TV, film, merchandise and theme parks, is exploring cutbacks in jobs no longer needed because of improvements in technology, one of the people said.
It is also looking at redundant operations that could be eliminated after a string of major acquisitions over the past few years, said the person, who did not want to be identified because Disney has not disclosed the internal review.
Executives warned in November that the rising cost of sports rights and moribund home video sales will dampen growth.
“We are constantly looking at eliminating redundancies and creating greater efficiencies, especially with the rapid rise in new technology,” said Disney spokeswoman Zenia Mucha.
The unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to 7.8 percent in September, reaching its lowest level since President Barack Obama took office and providing a boost to his re-election bid.
The Labor Department said on Friday that employers added 114,000 workers to their payrolls last month, a moderate number, but it said a combined 86,000 more jobs were created in the prior two months than it had previously thought. Other aspects of the report also were strong.
In particular, a separate survey of households found a big surge in hiring. That pushed the jobless rate down by 0.3 percentage point to its lowest level since January 2009, the month Obama took office. Economists had expected it to rise to 8.2 percent.
The drop in the unemployment rate came even as Americans returned to the labor force to resume the hunt for work. The workforce had shrunk in the prior two months.
Employers in July hired the most workers in five months, but an increase in the jobless rate to 8.3 percent muddled the near-term outlook for monetary policy.
Nonfarm payrolls rose 163,000 last month, the Labor Department said on Friday, beating economists’ expectations in a Reuters poll for a 100,000 gain. That snapped three straight months of job gains below 100,000 and offered hope for the struggling economy.
However, the unemployment rate rose from 8.2 percent in June, even as more people gave up the search for work and a survey of households showed a drop in employment.
The closely watched employment report comes two days after the Federal Reserve sent a stronger signal that a new round of major support could be on the way if the faltering recovery does not pick up.
Most economists had expected the Fed would launch a third round of bond purchases, possibly at its next policy meeting on September 12-13. But the mixed employment report has muddied the picture a bit.
Job growth braked sharply in May and the unemployment rate rose for the first time since June, putting pressure on the Federal Reserve to ease monetary policy further to shore up the sputtering recovery.
The Labor Department report on Friday, which showed employers added a paltry 69,000 jobs to their payrolls last month, the fewest since May last year, is also troubling news for President Barack Obama ahead of November’s elections.
The unemployment rate rose to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent partly because people flocked into the labor market.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected nonfarm payrolls to increase 150,000 and the jobless rate to hold steady at 8.1 percent.
Japan’s Sony Corp is cutting 10,000 jobs, about 6 percent of its global workforce, the Nikkei newspaper reported on Monday, as new CEO Kazuo Hirai looks to steer the electronics and entertainment giant back to profit after four years in the red.
The job cuts would be the latest downsizing in Japan Inc where companies from cellphone maker NEC Corp to electronics firm Panasonic Corp are trimming costs in the face of a strong yen and competition from rivals like Apple and Samsung Electronics.
TV makers in particular have been hit hard by the tough business climate as well as sharp price falls, with Sony, Panasonic and Sharp expecting to have lost a combined $17 billion in the fiscal year just ended.
She told me that every day she spends up to six hours trawling the internet for job opportunities and applies for any job she can find – she gets few replies. “I sit in my office for hours on end looking for work. I rarely go out and I am nearly always on my own.”
She has tried everything – even recruitment agencies that specialize in jobs in Australia – but she says they exploited her. “They took hundreds of euros from me for administration fees and then said I wasn’t eligible to work in Australia as I don’t score enough points for a visa. They said I could pay more money and apply again.”
Natassa is divorced and she has no family. Her mother and father, a university professor and a lawyer, died several years ago. Her brother died last year plunging her further into depression.
Her once affluent lifestyle has slipped slowly from her grasp and who knows where she will end up?
Photo blog: Homeless by August? A hopeless situation
The number of Americans claiming new jobless benefits fell back to a four-year low last week and manufacturing in the Northeast held up in March, providing more signs the economy was firmly on a self-sustaining growth path.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 351,000, the Labor Department said on Thursday. That took claims back to a four-year low reached in February.
Separately, the New York Federal Reserve said its Empire State general business conditions index rose to 20.21 - highest level since June 2010 - from 19.53 in February.
“This suggests that the recovery is firmly on track,” said Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Read more: Jobless claims back at four-year lows
Susanna Mancini cherishes a photo of herself at 27: a smiling face behind a pair of dark sunglasses. On it, she scrawled to her future husband: “Too bad you can’t see my eyes. I am so proud of my tough yuppie stare!”
Her professional pride propelled her early career as a lawyer. She was successful and well paid for it. She kept working when her first child was born and was promoted to a more senior position in Citibank after her second child arrived.
But her career eventually succumbed to something Mancini never expected would end her rise at the bank - her husband’s even bigger success. She quit in 2005 when her six-digit income was overtaken by his seven-digit one.
She is far from alone, according to a new study from the Federal Reserve, due to be published shortly.
It shows that between 1993 and 2006, there was a decline in the workforce of 0.1 percent a year on average in the number of college-educated women, with similarly educated spouses.