The government says the number of "mass layoffs" sharply increased last month as employers cut payrolls in the face of a deepening recession.
The Labor Department says mass layoffs, or job cuts of 50 or more by a single employer, increased to 2,227 in January, up by almost 50 percent from the same month last year.
The department says more than 235,000 workers were fired due to January's cuts.
Companies from a wide range of sectors announced thousands of layoffs last month, including Home Depot Inc., Boeing Co., Pfizer Inc. and Caterpillar Inc.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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