Consistent with year-to-date figures, job cuts in September came predominantly from banks and the military, Challenger, Gray & Christmas, said.
In September, the government announced 54,182 layoffs, bringing the year-to-date total to 159,588, almost three times the second on the list, which is financial firms with 31,167 layoffs in the month and 54,013 for the year so far.
The third industry on the list, education, has announced 8,724 layoffs this year, 6,462 of them in September.
The firm said job cuts surged 126 percent from the 51,114 layoffs announced in August. Layoffs were 212 percent higher than September 2010, when announced layoffs came to 37,151.
While the layoff picture looks grim, "It is important to keep in mind that 80,000 cuts or nearly 70 percent of last month's total, came from just two organizations: Bank of America and the United States Army," said Chief Executive Officer John Challenger.