Timesizing® Associates - HOMEPAGE

Downsizings, March 16-31/2001
[Commentary] ©2001 Phil Hyde, The Timesizing Wire, Box 117, Harvard Square, Cambridge MA 02238 USA (617) 623-8080


3/31/2001  6 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 2,280 lost jobs (not counting "Valence [Technology] lays off 181 personnel at Mallusk [Northern Ireland] factory," PRNewswire 03/30/2001 20:58 EST via AOLNews via RadioTony) -

  1. A mining company suspends operations in Zimbabwe - Political woes and a faltering national economy continue to take their toll, by Henri Cauvin, NYT, B2.
    Because they must dig where the ore is, mining companies...often calmly ride out political and economic crises that other businesses flee.
    [A strange opening. What about that big drilling company that recently pulled out of Aceh in Indonesia because of violence?]
    So it came as an especially stark indication of bad things have become in Zimbabwe when one of its oldest mining companies threw up its hands and said that it would shut down all three of its gold mines by April 1, after concluding that an end to the country's economic crisis was nowhere in sight.... The company, Falcon Gold Zimbabwe Ltd., a unit of Falcon Investments SA of Luxembourg, has been losing money heavily, like the rest of the mining industry in Zimbabwe.... One of its mines closed early in March and the other two were shut down in late March, idling about 1,000 workers in all, the company's financial director, Stef Hlaca, said in a telephone interview from Falcon's base in Bulawayo....

  2. 830 job cuts are planned at sport utility vehicle plant, Bloomberg via NYT, B3.
    The Ford Motor Co. will cut one shift, or about 830 jobs, from a highly profitable SUV factory in response to slowing sales. The cuts are being made at Ford's Michigan truck plant in Wayne, Mich. The shift elimination will reduce the plant's annual capacity to build the Ford Explorer and Lincoln Navigator SUV's by 65,000 vehicles, to 205,000. In 1999, with overtime, the plant produced almost 300,000 Expeditions and Navigators. [Their] sales...were down 15% through February.
    [If Ford and other companies hired a few more people instead of getting into overloading existing employees with overtime, the additional centrifugation of profits into wages instead of bloated top executive pay, plus the accompanying multiplier effect, would have kept sales up.]

  3. PRI to cut 20% of staff, Bloomberg via BG, F1.
    PRI Automation Inc., a maker of semiconductor factory-automation systems, said it will cut 20% of its work force and have a fiscal Q2 loss as the chip industry reduces spending. PRI will ax 370 of 1,850 full-time and temporary jobs..\.. PRI shares fell....

  4. HomeRuns.com cuts jobs, by Stephanie Stoughton, BG, F1.
    ...35 jobs at its Burlington MA headquarters, or less than 5% of its workforce. The online grocer employs more than 700 people, mostly delivery and warehouse workers who were not affected by the cutbacks. Ten of the 35 people...were offered jobs at the company's distribution center in Somerville....
    [Yes, folks, that's where Timesizing.com's international global universal HQ is located.]

  5. Harbinger of bad times - The ranks of job recruiters are thinning out rapidly, by Katie Hafner, NYT, B1.
    [photo caption] Herb Deitz, who manages the recruitment business for Unitek, a technology consulting firm in Fremont, Calif., had 35 recruiters reporting to him as late as last summer. But now that number has dwindled to 10.
    [So, 25 jobcuts.]

  6. Etc. - Sipex Corp., BG, F1.
    ...of Billerica MA [will] reduce its work force by about 4% to meet market requirements. According to its website, Sipex employs 500 workers worldwide.
    [So, 20 jobcuts.]

3/30/2001  7 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 27,860 lost jobs + unspecified (not counting a "limited number" of jobcuts according to "WSJ.com to lay off staff as Dow Jones cuts costs," Reuters 17:26 03-29-01 via both Matt Hoey & AOLNews via RadioTony) -
  1. 11,500 jobs are being cut at big maker of auto parts - A move aimed at reducing a reliance on higher-paid American workers, by Keith Bradsher, NYT, C1, C4.
    [Alas, they'd tried primitive timesizing (1/27, 1/23) but you need the advanced version, or at least one of the intermediate corporate workweek-based versions.]
    DETROIT...- The Delphi Automotive Systems Corp., the world's largest maker of auto parts, [will] eliminate...this year...5.5% of its work force, mainly by not hiring replacements for retirees in the U.S. but also through some layoffs. Delphi, which was spun off by General Motors two years ago and has 211,000 employees, said that 7,600 of the job cuts cut would be in the U.S. The company also said itiwould close 9 of its 175 factories and would take an after-tax charge of $400m in Q1 to pay for the changes, with much of the money going to retirement incentives....
    The cuts will reduce slightly Delphi's reliance on American workers, who make up a third of its work force. Two-thirds of the job cuts will be in the U.S. ...A higher proportion of American workers were eligible for retirement and the company wanted to rely as much as possible on retirements instead of layoffs.... Delphi plans to cut 7,600 jobs in the U.S. but has twice that many American workers who are eligible for retirement..\..
    Steep production cuts by automakers in Q1 have already whittled inventories of unsold cars, but assembly plants are unlikely to resume quickly the huge orders for parts that they were placing last year....

  2. Layoffs protested, by Don Kirk, NYT, W1.
    South Korean riot police arrested 200 former Korea Telecom employees who had seized a branch office in Seoul to protest the company's decision to lay them off after having hired them on a temporary basis.... The union said the company had laid off 7,000 of the 10,000 workers whom it had hired temporarily....

  3. Fading British retailer announces cutbacks, by Alan Cowell, NYT, W1.
    The ailing icon of British retailing, Marks & Spencer, announced a radical restructuring plan today that would eliminate 4,390 jobs, sell many of its businesses outside Britain, including the Brooks Brothers clothing chain and Kings Supermarkets in the U.S., and abandon its expansion into Continental Europe....

  4. Venator [Group] will rebuild a unit and close some stores, AP via NYT, C4.
    The athletic and footwear retailer...which announced plans to sell its lackluster Northern Group operation in January, [will] revamp the division as a solely Canadian company...
    [Don't they mean Clearly Canadian?]
    and close 323 Northern Reflections stores in the U.S...by the end of its second fiscal quarter, Aug. 4..\.. The moves will eliminate the jobs of 700 full-time and 2,300 part-time employees at Northern Reflection stores. The company said it would also be reducing the number of employees at its Northern Group corporate office in Toronto to 173 from 276.... [So, 700+2300+103= 3103 jobcuts.]

  5. Cookie maker cuts back, by John Tagliabue, NYT, W1.
    The world's leading cookie maker, Danone of France, announced measures to confront a worldwide glut of cookies by shutting six factories and cutting 1,200 jobs.
    [Hey, wait a minute. There can never be too many cookies in the world! If these people think there can, maybe they're in the wrong business!]
    Danone, which has been on a buying spree in the cookie world in the last 18 months, said the measures...will permit it to run factories at 57% of capacity instead of the current 43%. The moves will eliminate about 8% of Danone's 15,000 jobs in the next three years. Shares...fell....

  6. Kellogg will cut 470 jobs at its newly acquired Keebler, Reuters via NYT, C4.
    ...the snack food maker that it acquired three days ago.
    [Again, the market-bashing takeover-downsizing connection.]
    ...The cuts [will] come from the closing of Keebler's bakery in Denver by May 31. The jobs that will be eliminated represent nearly 4% of Keebler's work force in the United States. In an additional job-cutting measure, Kellogg [is] eliminating about 150 positions as part of a consolidation of its own headquarters.
    [For a total of 470+150= 620 jobcuts.]

  7. Etc. - Avid Technology Inc.'s Softimage unit, Globe wire services via BG, E5.
    ...will eliminate 47 jobs worldwide, including 37 at its Montreal location.

3/29/2001  7 downsizings reported in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 14,745 lost jobs + unspecified (not counting 7600 unreported jobcuts from "Nortel plans to cut 5,000 more jobs," by Bruce Myerson, AP 6:33 PM ET March 28, 2001 via Matt Hoey, and "HomeBase to fire 2,600 workers," AP-NY-03-28-01 1712EST via AOLNews via RadioTony) -
    [Oops, we're going to pull this one out of the downsizing (but not the jobcuts) count cuz on 4/10 we noticed it looks a lot like #2 on 2/27/2001. Mitsubishi seems to have R.A.S. (repetitive announcement syndrome).]
    Mitsubishi says charge will double expected loss - DaimlerChrysler plans to assert more control, NYT, W1.
    ...The plan...also calls for squeezing costs in nearly every part of the company and its affiliates, including reducing the total work force by 9,500 jobs, or about 14%, and shutting down about one-fifth of its worldwide production capacity....

  1. Chip maker cutting jobs, by Elizabeth Stanton, NYT, C6.
    The telecommunications equipment supplier ADC Telecommunications [will] eliminate 3,000 to 4,000 jobs, or almost 19% of its worldwide work force....
    [Note header and subheader of Boston Globe version -]
    ADC to trim 4,000 more jobs - 3,000 spots have been axed already, Bloomberg via BG, C2.
    ...will have an unexpected Q2 loss after customers canceled orders. Its shares fell 22% yesterday. ADC is trimming its [permanent] staff of 21,000 by about 19% and is firing another 1,000 temporary workers. That's in addition to 3,000 workers eliminated since November.... ADC will be cutting marketing costs, closing plants and firing most contract workers. Some of the 4,000 positions being eliminated will be through attrition, while other employees will be fired.
    [As for the 3000-4000, we'll go with 4000 because that matches the "about 19%" of 21,000 permanent jobs. Plus 1,000 temporary jobs. And neither the NYT nor BG has mentioned the previous 3,000 jobcuts. We mentioned 400 of them on 1/06/2001 but did not count them because they were "only" reported by AP. So our total count here is going to be 4000+1000+3000= 8000 lost jobs.]

  2. Sanyo cutting jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, W1.
    The Sanyo Electric Co. plans to cut about 6,000 jobs in Japan over three years, or 12% of the local work force....

  3. Lockheed [Martin] cutting 600 jobs as satellite launching lag, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    ...from its satellite and spacecraft production center to reduce costs because of a decline in commercial satellite launchings. The job reductions, about 12% of the work force at the unit, based in Littleton Colo., are already under way and are being done mostly through attrition.... The unit has about 5,600 employees. The failure of satellite-telephone companies like Iridium has resulted in less demand for satellites and launching services....

  4. PC Connection to cut 125 jobs, Bloomberg via BG, C7.
    ...A direct marketer of personal computers...will fire...7.5% of its work force....

  5. HomePortfolio lays off 20 workers, by Stephanie Stoughton, BG, C7.
    The home-design site [based in] Newton MA...has [brought] its work force [down] to about 70, in a bid to become profitable....

  6. Gateway closes 27 stores, Reuters via NYT, C6.
    The computer manufacturer...closed 27 of its Country Store showrooms, slimming operations to about the 300-store level executives had forecast in late February.

  7. Adoption agency planning to close - Newton MA firm says not enough babies to meet demand - After 15 years, adoption agency sees end, by Sarah Schweitzer, NYT, B1.
    ...Adoptions with Love..\..one of the area's largest adoption agencies, plans to shut its doors in June.... Said Elizabeth Quackenbush, the agency's director..."There appear to be fewer women plancing these children up for adoption, and many birth fathers won't sign the paperwork."...
    Adoptions with Love is one of 52 adoption agencies in Massachusetts, where state law requires that a licensed agency oversee an adoption. In the last three years, there have been two other private agency closures, according to Kate Arsenault, a spokeswoman for the Mass. Office of Child Care Services, which licenses adoption agencies.
    Adoptions with Love has long been considered one of the premier agencies in the area. Families seeking healthy babies born in the United States flocked to it, receiving assurances that a baby could likely be theirs within a year. The agency only placed domestic-born children, with many coming from other states.... Quackenbush said the decision to close the agency was heart-wrenching...but..."To have kept people waiting even longer would have just been cruel."
    [Maybe if we dropped the taboo on inter-racial adoptions, now that Americans are adopting thousands of Latin American and Chinese babies anyway?...]

3/28/2001  7 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 8,961 lost jobs + unspec'd -
  1. Disney is cutting 4,000 jobs worldwide, by Bill Carter, NYT, C1.
    In a move executives described as the most significant job reduction in the company's history...
    [Now there's a big consolation for the victims!]
    ...the Walt Disney Co. will eliminate 4,000 jobs, about 3% of its work force, through buyouts and possibly mandatory layoffs, the company announced yesterday. The order will affect every Disney division worldwide.... The only previous big job cut in the company's history came during the Arab oil embargo of the early 1970's, which curtailed the number of visitors to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., and prompted Disney to eliminate 1,700 jobs there. Yesterday, Disney executives cited the sputtering economy and, in particular, the recent slowdown in advertising sales....
    A buyout...will include unspecified severance incentives. If the buyout does not achieve the desired cuts by July, Disney will impose mandatory layoffs with what..\..Michael Eisner, the Disney chairman and Robert Iger, the president...in their letter referred to as "lesser severance benefits." Disney will take a one-time charge of $250m...to pay for the severance expenses....
    [Which, if they divided it evenly among the 4,000 victims, which they won't, would yield $62,500 per disemployed person.]

  2. Ericsson cuts jobs, by Suzanne Kapner, NYT, W1.
    The Swedish mobile phone equipment maker...said it would eliminate 2,600 jobs and outlined other measures to help cut costs by $1.9B beginning in 2002. Ericsson, which in January said it would farm out production of mobile phone handsets to Flextronics International, said it would close two British plants, trim back on consultants and impose a hiring freeze to help it return to profitability amid slowing demand for mobile phone equipment, which started in the United States and spread to Europe.

  3. American Greetings to dismiss 1,500 and close 6 plants, AP via NYT, C4.
    ...13% of its full-time work force...as part of a restructuring plan after a $127.7m loss in its fourth quarter. American Greetings...has been hurt by increased competition from the Internet and lower-priced goods.... About 250 [of the] jobs will be eliminated at the company's suburban Cleveland headquarters....
    [Too bad AG isn't imitating its neighbor in East Cleveland, Lincoln Electric, which hasn't had a layoff since 1959. It simply cuts its workweek, not its workforce. Compare American Greetings' previous cut on 6/24/1999 (1).]

  4. Etc. - Chinadotcom Corp., Globe wire services via BG, D2.
    ...will cut about 400 jobs, close offices, and consolidate operations worldwide by the end of the second quarter to cut costs.

  5. Palm Inc. profit beats estimates, Reuters via NYT, C4.
    ...Shipments of Palm organizers during the third quarter more than doubled from a year earlier to 2.1m. Nevertheless, the company said it would cut some 250 employees and delay construction of its new corporate headquarters in San Jose, Calif., which was scheduled to begin this month.

  6. Web consultant announces cutbacks, by Catherine Greenman, NYT, C4.
    The Viant Corp., which designs and maintains Web sites for businesses, said it would close its Houston, San Francisco and Munich offices and reduce its work force by 38%, or 211 employees. In addition to layoffs resulting from the office closings, which are in New York, Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, Los Angeles and London. "We're seeing an overall softening in the demand for our services," said Anna Svaldi, a spokeswoman for the company.
    [As of 12/08/2000 #4, we had Viant down for a total workforce of 610 of which 38% would be 232. But 211 would be 38% of 555. Did Viant lay off 610-555= 55 people in the meantime that they didn't tell us about? At any rate, the had 555 before the present layoff, and 344 afterward.]

  7. A maker of rail cars reduces output and will post loss, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    Trinity Industries, [based in Dallas,] the nation's leading maker of rail cars, trimmed its production plan for the second time this month and said it would cut jobs and record a fiscal fourth-quarter loss because railroads were reducing orders....

3/27/2001  6 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling (10,551-1,800=) 8,751 lost jobs (not counting 5000 other cuts from 5 downsizings unfavored by NYT or BG, all via AOLNews via RadioTony: (1) "VTech cutting 4,500 jobs, warns of year loss," Reuters 08:34 03-26-01, (2) "Ford to lay off [300 Oakville,] Ontario workers," AP-NY-03-26-01 1812EST, (3) "Bridgestone/Firestone lays off 100," AP-NY-03-26-01 2152EST, (4) 85 layoffs per "Phelps Dodge scaling back operations," by Joel Eskovitz, AP-NY-03-26-01 1815EST, (5) 10 layoffs at Akron Beacon Journal per "Akron paper workers protest layoffs," AP-NY-03-26-01 2133EST. Choice quotes from #1 - "Chairman Allan Wong characterized the planned six-month restructuring program revealed on Monday as 'just like cleaning the house.'... Vtech said its entire 3,000-employee-strong telephone manufacturing operation in Mexico will be closed, with the functions performed there to be relocated to VTech facilities in Dongguan, in southern China's Guangdong province. "There will be nothing left in Mexico," Chairman Allan Wong told Reuters shortly before a media briefing...." The news is sounding more and more like a sendup of a futuristic nightmare, sort of an appendix to "Demolition Man" starring Sylvester Stallone à la Chinois) -
  1. Aiwa plans job cuts, by Miki Tanikawa, NYT, W1.
    ...A struggling unit of Sony Corp. of Japan [plans] to reduce by half [5000] its group workforce of 10,000 in a bid to step up its revamping efforts....

  2. Technology consultant is planning to announce hefty layoffs, by Sorkin & Glater, NYT, C5.
    MarchFirst Inc. is expected to announce layoffs of up to half of its workforce, or about 3,500 employees by the end of this week, executives close to the company said yesterday. The battered...firm, which was formed...two years ago, has already laid off more than 2,000 workers in the last six months to try to cut costs and shift its focus from fading dot-com clients to more reliable established companies....
    [Well, they didn't do 50%, they did 30%. And they didn't announce this week, they announced next week -]
    Etc. - MarchFirst Inc., Globe wire services via 4/03/2001 BG, C2.
    ...of Chicago said it is laying off 1,700 people, about 30% of its staff, as it scrambles to sell assets and pay off heavy debts....
    [So we deduct the still-employed 1800 from today's total and from this coming weekend's total.]

  3. ...Conexant will cut jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    ...because the demand for communications chips [i]s falling. Conexant, of Newport Beach, Calif., [is] eliminating 1,500 jobs and 125 contract employees, about 20% of its work force.... The sales decline will cause a wider-than-expected loss at Conexant... Conexant also plans to trim senior managers' pay by 10%.
    [At their levels, it will be barely noticeable. And they're all-of-a-piece with the downsizing mentality that induced the downturn anyway.]

  4. PMC-Sierra...will cut jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    ...because the demand for communications chips [i]s falling. ...PMC-Sierra, based in Santa Clara, Calif., will dismiss 230 employees, or 13% of its staff. The sales decline will cause...lower profit at PMC-Sierra....
    [No losses? Still in profit? Then these are totally unnecessary dismissals which will serve only to fuel the recession.] PMC-Sierra could easily have trimmed 13% of its workweek for everyone, including top brass, and wound up with much higher morale and productivity.]

  5. SciQuest.com to cut 30% of work force, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    An electronic marketplace operator [will] cut its work force by about 30% to reduce operating costs. A spokesman said the cuts would leave SciQuest, which runs...marketplaces for scientific products, with 270 workers....
    [Lamely leaving us to do the math, that means 116 cuts.]

  6. Robertson Stephens to lay off 80 employees, Dow Jones via NYT, C4.
    The investment firm...will lay off...about 5% of its work force.... The cuts come as other investment banks and brokerage firms are pruning staff and cutting back on expenses because of the stock-market slump and the decrease in trading activity. Once the layoffs occur, Robertson Stephens, a unit of the Boston-based FleetBoston Financiala Corp., will have trimmed its work force 11% since the beginning of the year.... The firm employs about 1,500 people.
3/24/2001  yet 3 more downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 4,227 lost US jobs + unspecified (not counting 170 mostly Illinois layoffs (1.5%) according to "3Com announces job cuts," AP via Matt Hoey 23 Mar 2001 16:09:42) -
  1. Motorola will eliminate another 4,000 jobs, AP via NYT, B3.
    ...or about 3.1% of its work force, bringing the total eliminated companywide since December to 22,000. The latest cuts...will come mostly from two businesses..\..in Motorola's networks sector, which was created in January to provide broadband and wireless communications products and systems....
    ["LIFO" = last in, first out.]

  2. Proxicom, an Internet consultant, to lay off 227, Bloomberg via NYT, B3.
    ...or 19% of its work force.... Proxicom will lay off consultants and back-office support staff, the CFO Kenneth Tarpey, said. Employees at the company's Reston, Va., HQ and in other U.S. offices will account for 78% of the job cuts. Workers in London and Munich will represent 22%, he said.

  3. [Again, the lethal takeover-downsizing connection -]
    Fleet to close branches, Bloomberg via BG, F1.
    FleetBoston Financial Corp., the 7th-largest US bank, will shutter 80 branches in New Jersey after buying the state's largest bank. FleetBoston completed its acquisition of Summit for $7.3B this month. The Boston bank will close 47 Fleet branches [starting July 27] and 33 former Summit branches [starting July 12].
    [Happy Fourth to Fleet too.]
    FleetBoston will consolidate the branches into nearby locations, the bank said in a statement. The bank will be left with 446 branches in New Jersey....

3/23/2001  3 more downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 13,485 lost US jobs -
  1. Procter to cut 9,600 jobs in drive to trim its overhead, by Julian Barnes, NYT, C1.
    CINCINNATI...- Procter & Gamble [P&G] announced today that it would eliminate...9% of its work force in the company's second substantial effort to reduce its payroll in two years [15,000 axed on 6/10/1999].
    [Let's tell the truth. This isn't economic growth. It's economic shrinkage. The dot-com crash has proven that the size of your company can't be judged from your market capitalization (the total momentary worth of your stocks). So how can it be judged? Nobody has come up with a better way than the old way, your number of employees. So if a CEO wants to boast that he's got "a bigger one" than somebody else, it's just an empty codpiece unless it's number of employees. ]
    About 40% of the job cuts will occur in the U.S., and about 1,900 jobs will be lost in Cincinnati, where the company is based. P&G said it would first offer early retirement and voluntary severance packages. Then, in about two months, it will begin laying off employees.
    P&G is the 2d major consumer products company to announce large-scale layoffs. Gillette said in December that it would cut 2,700 jobs [see 12/19/2000 #2].
    [You gotta really have a death wish if you're a consumer products company and you're bashing consumer confidence not to mention consumer spending power by downsizing instead of timesizing - cutting your workforce instead of just your workweek. Especially if, like Gillette, you're doing it right before the main shopping season upon which you've pinned sales hopes.]
    Procter is the largest employer in the Cincinnati area, with 15,000 workers, and over the years it has developed a reputation as an insular and almost stodgy corporate giant.
    [Compared with the "connected" and "cutting edge" dot-coms - most of which are no longer with us - "insular" and "stodgy" is just fine.]
    Of late, the company has been trying to change, entering into alliances and joint ventures with other companies. The cutbacks may be part of the company's effort to remake its culture and become more nimble.
    [Yeah, just like Japan tried to "remake its culture and become more nimble" at the end of the 80s - with downsizing, not Timesizing(R) - and look at the toilet it's in today. We think the word here is, "If it works, don't fix it." CEOs seem to have a tough time realizing that their employees come before their stockholders - because their stockholders are the most evanescent and transient group they've got. In fact, there's a serious argument that their employees come first, even before their customers, because with unhappy employees, you're not going to have customers, and eventually, as many dot-coms found out, without customers you're not going to have stockholders. There's even a very wise management book out called something like, "Your Employees Come First." And announce an indefinite layoff and you immediately damage your corporate morale and your productivity. Here's a taste of that from this article -]
    Workers sitting in the corporate park outside the headquarters here slowly ate their lunches and mulled the company's announcement....

  2. Schwab plans up to 3,400 job cuts, by Danny Hakim, NYT, C4.
    The Charles Schwab Corp., forecasting no rebound in investor sentiment this year, [will] eliminate 11-13% of its work force.... The job cuts, to come mostly through layoffs in the second quarter, will reduce Schwab's work force of 25,500 by 2,750-3,400.... "We face a period where our clients are trading less, and trading less in a profound [he simply means "huge"] way," David Pottruck, co-CEO of Schwab, said..\.. Shares of Schwab, the nation's largest online brokerage firm, fell 4%, or 70 cents, to $15.20, the stock's lowest closing price in more than two years.
    ...As the long boom [make that "bubble"] has given way to a bear market[,] Merrill Lynch, Bear Stearns and other securities firms have announced job cuts in recent months, but most Wall Street firms have avoided layoffs despite the steep slump in their businesses. Schwab tried to stave off layoffs, using voluntary Friday leaves and executive salary cuts, but they proved only a temporary reprieve, an official said....
    [Rigid Fridays or any other kind of fixed-apriori hourscuts won't "cut it" in the longer run. You have to be prepared to vary your workweek on a weekly basis inversely with your corporate revenues or profits. Walter Reuther called it "flexible adjustment of the workweek." The closest companies to this model today are Nucor Steel and Lincoln Electric. By Y2100 they'll all be doing it in First World economies - if any First World economies are left. Next is a steel company that doesn't timesize and can't compete with Nucor in sheer corporate flexibility and survivability -]

  3. LTV Steel eliminates 17% of its positions, Reuters via NYT, C4.
    ...since the fourth quarter of 2000. The company is a unit of LTV Corp., based in Cleveland, which is reorganizing under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
    [They should have learned timesizing from Lincoln Electric right there in East Cleveland.]
    LTV Steel said that 290 of the 485 positions eliminated were related to the closing of the LTV Steel Mining Co. and the sale of its Tin Mill Products business. The remainder of the cuts came in staff and support areas throughout LTV Steel. Most of the staff and support positions were eliminated through attrition.

3/22/2001  3 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 792 lost jobs -
  1. Sunoco to shut down some plants and a refinery, AP via NYT, C4.
    ...lubricant-blend plants in Oklahoma and California [83 lost jobs] and Pennsylvania [96 jobkills in July when its inventories are depleted] and a refinery in Puerto Rico [220 in May]....
    [Totalling 399.]

  2. Cypress Communications will trim its work force, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    ...A seller of telephone services and Internet access [will] lay off 200 workers, or half its work force, as part of its plan to become profitable in the second half of 2003.... The cuts...are expected to be completed by midyear....

  3. DoubleClick will cut 10% of its staff, reorganize, Bloomberg via BG, E4.
    ...The largest Internet advertising company...as it reorganizes its US advertising units...expects to end the second quarter with 1,850 employees, down from 1,929 at the end of December....
    [1929? How appropriate. Minus 1850 means 79 lost jobs. But 79 is only 4% of 1,929. 10% would be 193 cuts. So presumably the rest of the cuts will be in the third quarter.]

3/21/2001  7 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 4,085 lost jobs + unspecified
  1. Teradyne laying off 650 staffers worldwide as business slows - Furloughs, delayed salary increases, and pay cuts also await some employees at Boston-based Teradyne, the leading maker of microchip-testing equipment. It employs more than 10,000 people, by Hiawatha Bray, BG, D3.
    The struggling Massachusetts technology sector got another shock yesterday as Teradyne Inc. laid off in an effort to slash costs. ...The layoffs would be spread throughout the company's worldwide operations....
    In addition to the layoffs, an unspecified number of workers will be furloughed; salary increases will be delayed; and senior managers will accept pay cuts.
    [Well the furloughs can be regarded as a primitive kind of timesizing, but real timesizing involves cutting hours and pay for everyone to avoid any layoffs. And using the incidence of overtime pressures relative to the lower corporate workweek as a trigger for training and hiring.]
    The announcement comes less than two weeks after Teradyne...said it would cut its temporary workforce by 1,400 people, freeze hiring, and furlough some workers....
    [So assuming that the 650 is permanent employees in addition to the 1400 temp-staff cuts, which neither the NYT nor the Globe reported, we get a total of 650+1400= 2050 layoffs, or 20.5% of the total workforce of 10,000 (or 18% of a total workforce of 10000+1400= 11,400).]

  2. Clariant starts year slowly, by Elizabeth Olson, NYT, W1.
    ...A Swiss company that sells de-icers for runways and ingredients for the drug Viagra [will] cut 800 jobs at its Hoechst specialty chemicals business by 2002, sell a pigments plant and outsource 500 service jobs.
    [So 800+500= 1300 lost or ephemeralized jobs.]

  3. Milacron cuts earnings forecasts and will lay off 300, Reuters via NYT, C4.
    The plastics and metalworking technology producer [based in Cincinatti will] eliminate about 300 jobs, or about 5% of its North American workforce..\..because of an industrial slowdown....

  4. Consultant announces cutbacks, by Elizabeth Stanton, NYT, C4.
    Xpedior, an Internet consulting company [will] close four offices and lay off 300 employees, or 42% of its workforce. The cutback follows two previous rounds of layoffs that reduced the workforce of about 1,400 by half. The Chicago-based company will close offices in New York, Dallas, Denver, and San Jose, Calif. and reduce staff at its Alexandria, Va., office.... Trading of Xpedior, whose shares fell 98% in the last year, was halted yesterday after it had been under $1 for 30 trading days.

  5. Putnam [Investments] lays off, InvestorForce.com via BG, D7.
    ...The fourth-biggest US mutual fund group has laid off workers, the Website InvestorForce.com reported, citing unnamed sources. The job cuts last week took place in more than one department and involved fewer than 100 workers, the Website said. Putnam employs 7,000 workers worldwide.... The layoffs come amid a drop in Putnam's assets under management...from June when the firm ran $407B in assets \to\ $343.5B through February....

  6. eCollege to lay off 35, AP via NYT, C22.
    DENVER...- The online learning company [will] lay off 35 of its 330 workers amid lower-than-expected sales....

  7. A maker of manufactured homes shutters two plants, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    Champion Enterprises...closed 2 plants and 30 sales centers to reduce its inventory of homes.... Champion, based in Auburn Hills, Mich., has closed 17 plants since 1999 and 83 stores in the last 9 months.
    [Unspecified jobcuts.]

3/20/2001  3 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 14,700 US & Korean lost jobs + unspecified (not counting 550 jobcuts worldwide (10%) by Creative Technology to "aggressively cut costs," per AP-NY-03-20-01 1810EST via AOLNews via RadioTony) -
  1. Electronics manufacturer is trimming 8,200 jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    The Solectron Corporation [is doing] a more than 10% reduction, because demand is falling. The company plans to take a $300-400m charge for the workforce reduction and to reconfigure factories, a spokesman, Keven Whalen, said. Many of the jobs were cut the last two weeks. The company had 79,000 employees at the end of its second quarter ended March 2....

  2. Daewoo plans to cut 6,500 jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, C4.
    SEOUL, South Korea...- Daewoo Motor, the bankrupt carmaker struggling to stabilize its finances [will] eliminate 6,500 jobs, or one-seventh of the work force, at a string of overseas subsidiaries that it spent $5B to acquire in the 1990's....
    [Again, the fatal takeover-downsizing connection, coupled with lethal megadebt left over from paying too much for those acquisitions, leading us to the conclusion that the most successful economies of the future will ban takeovers. This kind of obsessive compulsive, ultimately suicidal and downturn-inducing "efficiency" more and more economies will decide they don't need.]
    The company had said it was no longer able to support its overseas plants, acquired by the former Daewoo group chairman, Kim Woo Choong, in an aggressive expansion [or was that "inflation"? - ed.] campaign..\.. Plants in India and Poland may become independent through debt-for-equity swaps, the company said. The moves came amid mounting doubts that General Motors, the main hope for the company's long-term salvation, would buy the company....
    [GM is pretty short-sighted and narrowly-motivated but not, perhaps, enough to jump into this morass.]

  3. Questions on firings and severance at Computer Associates, by Alex Berenson, NYT, C1.
    ...Fired workers said that the [Islandia NY-based] company, which makes software that many big companies use to manage their computer systems, is disguising a mass layoff as individual firings of subpar employees to avoid paying severance..\..
    [For example] Mary Welch..\..on Jan.3...received her annual performance review.... Ms. Welch, a saleswoman based in Chicago, "exceeds expectations," the review said. She got an "outstanding" rating for meeting "commitments made to those within and outside of the department." It was the second positive review that Computer Assocs. [or Ass's under the circumstances?!] had given Ms. Welch in less than a year. Last March, the company gave her sole responsibility for its relationship with the Aon Corporation, a Chicago-based insurance company.... So she was stunned when Computer Assocs. fired her on Jan. 16. She was even more taken aback when it told her that because she had been fired [13 days after her positive review - ed.] for poor performance, she could get no severance pay for her five years at the company and her health insurance would be immediately canceled unless she paid for it herself....
    Since November, the company has fired hundreds of workers around the world, a dozen former employees said. The company would not disclose how many people had been let go, or whether its overall work force of about 18,000 had grown or shrunk in that time. "They did a mass layoff," Ms. Welch said. "There's no ifs, ands, or buts."...
    If it lacks documentation for the firings, the company might also have opened itself to lawsuits that argue that the firings were discriminatory, labor lawyers said....
    [This is the kind of CEO behavior that gives our primitive short-sighted brand of capitalism such a foul taste that it generates support for primitive short-sighted socialism. We're treating it as a downsizing with unspecified lost jobs worldwide.]

3/19/2001  1 downsizing cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling unspecified lost jobs - 3/17/2001  4 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 3,040 lost jobs + unspecified -
  1. Cooper Industries lowers its earnings forecast, Reuters via NYT, B4.
    The diversified manufacturer...said it would eliminate almost 6% of its jobs because of the slowing economy. ...Job cuts of 1,500 to 2,000 [say 2000 in view of the following] "wouldn't be at all unreasonable for starters," said John Riley Jr., Cooper's chairman, president and chief executive, on a conference call with analysts and investors. The Houston-based company had 34,000 employees at year-end.
    ["Not at all unreasonable" when they simply speed up the slowdown? Poor John Riley hasn't the creativity to trim hours rather than jobs and markets.]

  2. Computer Sciences to cut 1% of its [global] work force, AP via NYT, B4.
    ...700 to 900 jobs [say 800], and said yesterday that it would miss earnings forecasts by a wide margin this quarter. The company blamed reduced demand for traditional information technology consulting as the effects of a slowing economy continued to spread across the technology spectrum.... The company said the worldwide economic environment, as well as the demand for consulting and systems integration services, had deteriorated....

  3. Primedia, magazine publisher, planning to cut 160 jobs, Bloomberg via NYT, B4.
    ...The magazine publisher that bought About.com Inc. for $426m two weeks ago [will] cut about 160 jobs to reduce costs at its magazines and Web sites that aim at businesses. Primedia, which is based in New York, will eliminate about 140 jobs at its Intertec group of trade publications and about 20 jobs at its IndustryClick group of Internet sites, a spokesman, Whit Clay, said.
    [So, again the lethal slide from takeover to downsizing.]
    Primedia said it was combining some of the functions of Intertec and IndustryClick with those of ABZ, an About.com unit that operated business-oriented Web sites. Primedia said the move was part of an effort to cut $49m in annual expenses by combining its operations with those of About.com.

  4. Lids moves to sell assets, by Chris Reidy, BG, C1.
    ...A Westwood MA chain of sports-cap stores that sought bankruptcy protection in January...filed a motion to sell nearly all of its assets to Hat World Corp. of Indiana....... After recently announcing the closing of nearly 100 stores, Lids [Corp.] now operates 290 stores, a Web site, and 91 leased departments within Just For Feet stores. If the sale is completed, Hat World would continue Lids' retail operations, keep the Lids brand name, and retain most of Lids' 1,400 employees; still unclear is what might happen to 80 workers at Lids' headquarters, said Lids chief executive, Nancy Babine Kucinski....
    [Let's assume all Lids' employees will be retained except the 80 at HQ and the unspecified number already laid off when the "nearly 100" stores were closed.]

3/16/2001  5 downsizings cited in NY Times (NYT) & Boston Globe (BG), totaling 8,310 lost jobs worldwide -
  1. Compaq to cut 5,000 jobs; profit forecast is lowered - Another technology company scrambles to trim costs [the suicidal way -ed.], by Richard Oppel via NYT, C6.
    ...A leading manufacturer of personal computers and servers...will trim 7% of [its] work force..\.. Analysts said the announcement further underscored how long it might take the technology sector to recover from the slowdown in consumer buying and corporate capital spending....
    [Notice that analysts (above) have reached the point of enlightenment where they realize there's a slowdown in consumer buying but they're not yet talking about the way they caused the slowdown by encouraging CEOs to downsize their (consumer-)employees. Notice also (below) that the CEO in question here has not even got to the point of enlightenment that the dense analysts have clawed their way to, because he's blaming a mysterious slide in consumer confidence instead of getting right to the point and talking about the slide in consumer buying.]
    Michael Capellas, Compaq's chief executive, blamed the weak U.S. economy, sliding consumer confidence and cutbacks in industry capital spending, and he said he "remains concerned about future deterioration in global markets."
    [You should be, Michael. You are pushing that deterioration further by destroying 5,000 more units of consumer confidence and buying (7% of your workforce) rather than retarding the slide by simply trimming hours for everyone in your company and prorating pay if necessary - but keeping everyone employed and consuming at roughly 93% of normal. Social species get a lot more scared ("unconfident") if they're not all in it together, so your 7% downsizing is going to make many of your other employees pull back their spending too. Downsizing also worsens the surplus of labor and pressures wages down further and causes spending to decrease as profits concentrate in the top brackets that have no need (or time) to spend. If you timesized, you'd be holding the line on the current labor surplus instead of worsening it, and if we then lowered the workweek nationally, your hiring of more people would pump earnings and confidence into more consumers and initiate a solid economic recovery.]
    Compaq [will] merge its commercial and consumer PC divisions and trim its marketing force. Combined with previously announced cost-cutting, the moves should save the Houston-based company $500-600m a year.... The layoffs...will come from the personal computer business and from within marketing and supply-chain divisions, which include manufacturing, distribution, inventory, procurement and order controls. Mr. Capellas said the company would make most cuts within six weeks....

  2. Heinz says it plans to eliminate 1,900 jobs, AP via NYT, C4.
    H. J. Heinz plans to eliminate...about 4% of its global work force, with most of the cuts coming in its struggling tuna and pet food operations. Heinz's chief executive, William R. Johnson, said the job cuts were aimed at streamlining [those] businesses and reducing overhead costs worldwide.
    [They will also directly "streamline" his own markets and by worsening the global labor glut, reduce wage levels and further "streamline" his own markets in contrast with Timesizing (cutting hours, not jobs) will would do none of the above.]
    A tuna processing plant in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, will be closed, eliminating 1,300 jobs by the end of April, and 325 jobs will be lost with the closing of a pet food canning operation at Terminal Island, Calif.
    [And this kind of slump promotion when the Heinz's numbers are fine -]
    Heinz also said it earned $270.5m...its third quarter, up [158%] from $171.1m...in the period a year earlier.
    [With this kind of gratuitously slump-driving CEO, we are sure to join China and India as a big dumb third-world country within the next generation (30 yrs) - with a few rich people and everyone else poor - and a tiny fraction of the kind of markets we should have and did have in the 1940s and 50s when we had "less concentration and more circulation" - fewer super-rich "investors" and more customers.]

  3. Applied Materials offers buyouts, Bloomberg via NYT, C8.
    ...voluntary severance packages to as many as 1,000 employees because of slowing demand for its chip-making equipment. People who choose to leave will be offered separation pay and a benefits package. Demand...has slowed with sales of computers, cell phones and pagers.

  4. Steris is closing a plant and is cutting up to 350 jobs, Reuters via NYT, C4.
    ...[A maker of] infection control products [will] cut 300 to 350 jobs, or up to 8% of its work force...in a bid to increase profits. The company, which employs 4,500 people [will] close its plant in Medina, Ohio, and move operations to its plant in Montgomery, Ala.
    [It seems to be the coordination of production and consumption that we've got wrong. Primitive predatory capitalism, which doesn't think beyond its own corporation or occasionally its own industry, or further ahead than the next quarter, just wants to capitalize and funnel to the richest few the profits from the markets based on the current degree of centrifuged spending power, regardless of the fact that it is diminishing its own markets. But of course, that's only after a certain lag time so who cares. Long-term capitalism cares, as modeled by Nucor Steel and Lincoln Electric, and so it practices timesizing, not downsizing.]
    Steris previously announced closings at two St. Louis plants.
    [All we heard about from the Times or the Globe are 200 jobcuts on 4/01/2000.

  5. Agency cuts jobs, by Allison Fass, NYT, C8.
    Leapnet Inc., an interactive servcies agency, dismissed 60 employees, or 13% of its staff. "Clients are being more cautious in terms of working with outside vendors," Stacey Cohen, a spokeswoman, said.


Click here for downsizing stories in -
Mar.1-15/2001.
Feb.16-28/2001.
Feb.1-15/2001.
Jan.16-31/2001.
Jan.1-15/2001.
Dec.16-31/2000.
Dec.1-15/2000.
Nov.16-30/2000.
Nov.1-15/2000.
Oct/2000.
Sep.16-30/2000.
Sep.1-15/2000.
Aug.16-31/2000.
Aug.1-15/2000.
Jul.16-31/2000.
Jul.1-15/2000.
Jun/2000.
May/2000.
Apr/2000.
Mar/2000.
Feb/2000.
Jan/2000.
Dec/1999.
Nov/99.
Oct/99.
Sept/99.
Aug.16-31/99.
Aug.1-15/99.
July/99.
May-Jun/99.
Mar-Apr/99.
Jan-Feb/99.
December/98.
November/98.
October/98.
prior to Sept. 30/98.

For more details, our laypersons' guide to our great economic future Timesizing, Not Downsizing is available at bookstores in Harvard Square, Cambridge, Mass. or from *Amazon.com online.

Questions, comments, feedback? Phone 617-623-8080 (Boston) or email us.


Return to Top | Return to Home Page