Job Cuts Keep Coming—Is Your Firm On the List?
More companies announced layoffs this week as the employment picture continued to dim.
News Corp., GlaxoSmithKline and Tiffany & Co. on became the latest victims of the weakening economy, each cutting an undisclosed number of jobs.
The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for unemployment benefits jumped to a 26-year high last week, according to government data on Thursday that pointed to a rapid deterioration in the economy.
Additionally, the number of people staying on the benefit rolls hit a record high in the week ended Jan. 24, showing the weak labor market has yet to hit bottom. On Friday, the Labor Department will issue the employment report for January, and analysts are expecting a drop of 525,000 payroll jobs.
The department said initial claims for state unemployment insurance benefits rose 35,000 to a seasonally adjusted 626,000 in the week ended Jan. 31, the highest since the week ending Oct. 30, 1982. The prior week's number was revised up to 591,000 from 588,000.
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast 585,000 new claims.
The number of people staying on the benefits roll after drawing an initial week of aid surged by 20,000 to a record 4.788 million in the week ended Jan. 24, the latest week for which the data is available, from 4.768 million the previous week.
The four-week moving average for new claims, considered to be a better gauge of underlying trends as it irons out week-to-week volatility, rose to 582,250, the highest reading since the week ending Dec. 4, 1982.
Here is a rundown of corporate job cuts announced so far this year:
- News Corp's CEO Rupert Murdoch, announced the company would slash costs and indicated layoffs were in store.
- GlaxoSmithKline did not spell out the number of jobs it would cut but analysts expect thousands more positions to be shedfrom a global workforce of around 100,000.
- Reeling from a precipitous slump in global holiday sales, Tiffany & Co , has laid off an undisclosed number of employees around the world, including several at its Westport and Greenwich stores.
- Estee Lauder said it would cut 2,000 jobs, or 6 percent of its work force, over the next two years as the apparel firm grappled with a 30 percent drop in its second-quarter profit and a difficult outlook for the coming year.
- Magna International will close its gear assembly plant in Syracuse, New York, after workers rejected a contract the company said wasnecessary to keep the factory competitive. The shutdown of the New Process Gear facility will ultimately eliminate 1,400 jobs.
- THQ posted a quarterly loss as sales of video games fell more than expected, and also said that it plans to layoff 600 peoplein fiscal 2010 and cut spending.
- Talbots said it plans to save $150 million by cutting 370 corporate jobs, or 17 percent of its corporate headcount, reducing the hours of workers in its stores and call centers and suspending its matching contributions to employees' 401(k) retirement accounts.
- Auto parts maker Tenneco posted a wider quarterly loss Thursday due to tumbling vehicle production and said it is closing three plants and slashing 1,100 jobs.
- Footwear retailer Brown Shoe said it expects to cut 12 percent to 14 percent of its domestic work force, excluding stores and distribution centers, and take a charge of $27 million to $30 million related to its cost-reduction actions.
- Cisco Systems said forecast revenue will drop far more sharply in the current quarter than Wall Street expected, and announced the network equipment maker is cutting up to 2,000 jobs.
- Bloombergwill cut 100 television and radio jobsin the first layoffs since it was founded in 1981 by now-New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
- Fidelity National Financial , the largest U.S. title insurer, said it cut 1,500 jobs in January, and posted a fourth-quarter loss as the housing slump drove down home sales and refinancings.
- Clorox posted a lower quarterly profit, as consumers bought cheaper products and used up what they had at home, and said it would cut 170 jobs due to the tough economy.
- Allergan , maker of the anti-wrinkle treatment Botox, reported lower fourth-quarter earnings that beat Wall Street forecasts and said it would lay off 460, or 5 percent, of its workforce because of the recession.
The Employment Gloom Continues...
- Time Warner Cable says it is laying off 1,250 people over the next few weeksin the face of slowing growth at the nation's second largest cable operator.
- Electronic Arts said it would cut 1,100 jobs, or about 11 percent of its workforce, higher than the 1,000 it announced in December. It also plans to close 12 facilities as it narrows its product portfolio.
- Fashion company Liz Claiborne said that it planned to cut 725 jobs, or 8 percent of its U.S. workforce, to reduce costs in a weak retail market.
- PNC Financial Services said it plans to cut 5,800 jobsfollowing its recent purchase of troubled lender National City, and posted a fourth-quarter loss tied to the transaction.
- Huntington Bancshares said that it was cutting 500 jobs, or about 4 percent of its workforce, as part of moves to slash $100 million in costs in 2009.
- Forest-products company Tembec said it would shut down several facilities, affecting about 1,400 employees, due to the depressed markets for lumber, pulp and newsprint.
- King Pharmaceuticals is cutting 760 jobs, or 22 percent of its workforce,as part of a restructuring designed to reduce costs. About 240 of the job losses are corporate positions associated with King's $1.6 billion acquisition of drugmaker Alpharma.
- The 7,000 job cuts at Macy's account for 4 percent of the company's work force. In addition to the job cuts, the retailer said it is cutting the 401(k) contribution it provides to existing employees. Also hurting Macy's shares was a dividend cut, to 5 cents per share from 13.5 cents.
- Morgan Stanley plans to cut about 3 to 4 percent of its work force, or up to 1,880 people, as it battles with spiraling costs and slowing business, according to people familiar with the matter. This wave of layoffs comes in addition to 7,000 layoffs the firm announced in 2008.
- Caterpillar said it was laying off an additional 2,110 workers as the company scrambles to cope with a downturn in demand for its construction and mining equipment.
The Employment Gloom Continues...
- Walt Disney's television division is cutting 400 jobs, or about 6 percent of the unit's work force, due to the slumping economy.
- Strattec Security announced it will cut back on its production work force and cut its salaried work force by 10 percent. Twenty salaried workers were let go, while 66 production workers, or about one-third of the Glendale factory's work force, are on temporary layoff.
- Electronics giant NEC said it will cut 20,000 workers worldwide to stanch mounting losses, joining a slew of other Japanese corporate heavyweights who are slashing jobs to survive the deepening global downturn.
- Cessna Aircraftissued 60-day layoff notices to thousands of Wichita workers, saying job cuts must go deeper than previously expected. Cessna plans to cut employment by about 30 percent—approximately 4,600 companywide. That number has mushroomed since Cessna first announced it would eliminate 665 jobs in November. In early January, Cessna said it would cut an additional 2,000 jobs.
Eastman Kodak posted an unexpected quarterly loss and said it would cut up to 4,500 jobs this yearafter suffering a dramatic decline in demand for digital cameras and commercial printing equipment.
- British drugmaker AstraZeneca posted lower fourth-quarter net income, announced 6,000 further job cuts and issued a cautious 2009 sales outlook.
- Northbrook-based Allstate said that it plans to cut about 1,000 jobs in its financial arm through a combination of attrition and job cuts over the next two years.
- Oshkosh said it was cutting its workforce by 7 percentand withdrawing its 2009 earnings forecast. The company said it was also cutting production and closing a number of facilities. Over the past year, Oshkosh has laid off about 2,400 of its 14,200 workers.
- Tool maker Black & Decker said it would cut about 1,200 jobsto curb costs while battling a further fall in demand in most of its markets in 2009.
- Ford Motor Credit, the lending and financing arm of Ford Motor , will cut about 20 percent of its U.S. staff, or about 1,200 jobs, as part of a restructuring plan announced in meetings with employees.
The Employment Gloom Continues...
- Top U.S. specialty electronics chain Best Buy said about 500 of its workers accepted the voluntary exit packages.
- Time Warner's AOL will cut about 700 jobs, or 10 percent of its workforce, as it copes with an advertising slump, in a move that could make the slimmed-down company more attractive to possible merger partners.
- General Motors plans to end its controversial jobs bank program, which paid UAW workers who were not working. Chrysler ended its jobs bank program earlier this week. The 1,600 UAW workers in GM's jobs bank will be placed on layoff and must apply for unemployment benefits.
- Business-software company SAP said it would lay off 3,000 people in 2009, or nearly 6 percent of its global work force.
Retailer Pacific Sunwear said it is eliminating 47 positions at its headquarters and 10 field management positions. The move, which is aimed at lowering expenses, will reduce its headquarters and field management staff by about 11 percent.
- Starbucks will cut 6,000 positions as it closes 300 stores worldwideover the next eight months and will eliminate about 700 non-store workers by mid-February as it cuts costs to stem its eroding profits.
- TheReader's Digest Association is cutting about 280 jobs, or 8 percent, of its staff as it tries to strengthen itself against the world financial crisis. It also will stop matching contributions to U.S. employees' 401(k) retirement plans.
- Boeing announced plans to lay off an additional 10,000 employees, about 6 percent of Boeing's workforce, as it braces for a global slowdown certain to hurt aircraft sales. The latest job cuts, which include the 4,500 workers Boeing had previously said it would eliminate, came as the aerospace manufacturer reported a huge fourth-quarter loss.
- Target said it will cut roughly 600 jobs at its headquarters, leave another 400 positions unfilled and close a distribution center that employs 500 workers as it contends with weaker-than-expected sales.
- Oilfield-services provider Baker Hughes announced plans to cut about 4 percent of its work force, or about 1,500 employees.