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A series of disappointing earnings releases last week drove the
number of technology layoffs to new highs, as the Channel Insider
Layoff tracker climbed to nearly 154,000 jobs lost or slated for
elimination since October 2008.

The rumors of Microsoft’s massive layoffs were put to rest when the
company announced its first forced reduction in its 35-year history.
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) plans to cut around 5,000 jobs over the next
18 months, beginning with 1,400 immediate layoffs. The world’s largest
software company said the staff reduction would mostly target redundant
positions throughout its 90,000-plus work force.

"We may eliminate up to 5,000 jobs, but we’ll also be adding several
thousand employees, [so] I expect to be down a net of 2,000 to 3,000,"
said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

Under recessionary pressures, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) announced the
closing of two assembly and test facilities, one in Penang, Malaysia,
and another in Cavite, Philippines. In addition, the world’s largest
semiconductor company plans to stop production at two production plants
located in Hillsboro, Ore., and Santa Clara, Calif.

Intel’s changes will affect between 5,000 and 6,000 employees
worldwide. Intel is working with the employees to place as many as
possible at other locations.

Intel will gradually close the facilities between now and the end of
2009, it said. A company spokesperson stated the closures are designed
to "align its manufacturing capacity to current market conditions."

AMD (NYSE: AMD), Intel’s leading competitor, announced “targeted
restructuring actions” that, with normal attrition, result in the
elimination of 900 jobs. The company had already announced a layoff in
November that affected 500 employees. AMD recently won regulatory
approval to split the company in two: one company for research,
development and sales, and the second company for manufacturing.

The biggest jump in January layoffs came when electronics retailer
Circuit City announced it was unable to restructure its debt and will
liquidate its remaining assets. The closure of the retail company will
result in the loss of 35,000 jobs nationwide.

The following is Channel Insider’s tally of layoffs since the recession officially began in October.


Month Company Layoffs
January AMD 1,100
Month to Date Attachmate 120
73,010 Autodesk 750
  BlueArc 21
  Bose 1,000
  Circuit City 34,000
  Coremetrics 29
  Dell 1,900
  Electoronic Arts 600
  EMC 2,400
  Ericsson 5,000
  Google 100
  Google (contractors) 5,000
  Intel 6,000
  Kronos 260
  Lenovo 2,500
  Lexmark 375
  Logitech 500
  Microsoft 5,000
  Motorola 4,000
  Nokia 1,000
  Oracle 500
  Seagate 800
  WatchGuard 55
December Intrinsyc 95
Month Total Adobe Systems 600
13,095 Sage North America 150
  AT&T 12,000
  Windstream 170
  Lexmark International 80
November Kodak 150
Month Total Spot Runner 115
21,433 Nortel Networks 1,300
  Motorola 3,000
  Nokia 600
  Tektronix 150
  Cadence 625
  AMD 500
  SanDisk 450
  BitTorrent 18
  Insight 240
  Circuit City 3,400
  Imation 200
  Applied Materials 1,800
  National Semiconductor 330
  Sun Microsystems 6,000
  Epicor 300
  KLA-Tencor 900
  Pillar Data Systems 150
  Lawson Software 200
  Lam Research 600
  Akamai 110
  Palm 105
  Quantum 180
  Fring 10
October Micron 353
Month Total: Qimonda 3,000
46,281 Jive Software 40
  Actel 60
  Sony Ericsson 2,000
  MPC Computers 200
  Lenovo 50
  Jaxtr 13
  Texas Instruments 300
  Softchoice 65
  Manhattan Associates 150
  HP 24,600
  Dell 8,900
  Xerox 3,000
  ADC Telecoms 325
  BroadSoft 12
  Symantec 788
  Freescale 2,400
  Aliph 25
Total Since October 153,819