March 2011

Back Issues of Trends

Labor Market Information


Wyoming Mass Layoff Events Decline Slightly in 2010

Many times when unemployment insurance (UI) claims are discussed, the focus is on large numbers of people being laid off; that is, the individual is the unit of analysis (see, for example, Wen, 2010). The Mass Layoff Statistics (MLS) program takes a different approach, by focusing on the firms that are responsible for large numbers of claims.

Because of Wyoming's geography, climate, and natural resources there are many seasonal employers in Wyoming. If these employers lay off 50 or more workers and do not recall them within 30 days, it is considered a mass layoff event. Thus, even when the state's economy is growing rapidly, as in 2006 and 2007, there are still layoff events.

The number of mass layoff events in Wyoming declined slightly from a a2t1series high of 13 in 2009 to 12 in 2010 (see Table). However, the associated initial UI claims increased marginally from 2009 to 2010.

For many years there were very few mass layoffs in Wyoming. Then, as the nation fell into a recession in December 2007, the number of layoff events in the state began to increase. There were 8 events during 2008, a 60% increase from the year before. Layoffs increased further in 2009, as a total of 13 events were recorded. The number of "extended" mass layoffs (one lasting more than 30 days) increased from 4 in 2007 to 10 in 2009 and then decreased to 7 in 2010.

More information on what constitutes mass layoff statistics event can be found here.

Senior Economist David Bullard can be reached at (307) 473-3810 or david.bullard@wyo.gov.

Wen, S. (2010). Wyoming unemployment insurance benefit payments reach record high in 2009. Wyoming Labor Force Trends, 47(2). Retrieved April 1, 2011, from http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/0210/a1.htm


Last modified by Michael Moore.