Help My Career: The U.S. job market is strong, but layoffs are on the rise. Is this a good — or bad — time to ask for a raise? Experts weigh in.

by | Dec 4, 2022 | Stock Market

Is this an opportune time to ask for a raise? Or, given the recent spate of tech layoffs, is it better to lie low for a while?  The good news: Employers are giving pay raises. The increase in wages over the past year climbed to 5.1%, from 4.9% in the prior month, the Labor Department said Friday. Salaries continue to rise much faster than before the pandemic, when they were going up about 2% to 3% a year.

Still, wages are not keeping up with inflation. But if you decide to ask for a raise, here is one piece of advice: Talk about your own performance during pay negotiations — not about external factors like inflation and interest rates.  U.S.-based employers announced 76,835 job cuts in November, a 127% jump from the previous month, according to a report by Challenger, Gray and Christmas released on Thursday, and 417% higher than a year ago. So far this year, companies have announced plans to cut 320,173 jobs, a 6% increase from last year. Tech companies alone have announced more than 60,000 job cuts this year, with indications that there will be more to come.

“Employers and employees alike are concerned about inflation, rising interest rates and the prospect of a recession in 2023.”

But hiring has outstripped layoffs. On Friday, the Labor Department reported 263,000 new jobs in November, while the unemployment rate held steady at 3.7%. However, the strong pace of hiring has become a big source of concern at the Federal Reserve, which has been raising interest rates in an effort to cool inflation. Also read: U.S. stocks fall as strong November jobs data challenges Fed to push interest rates higher Employers and employees are also concerned about inflation, rising interest rates and the prospect of a recession in 2023. “Navigating the impacts of a recession is no easy task, but it’s important for employers to remember that businesses aren’t the only ones staying afloat,” said John Morgan, president at LLH — formerly Lee Hecht Harrison — a talent mobility company, in …

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