Tech Layoffs Accelerating, Reach 300,000

By February 20, 2009

Tech layoffs quickly hit 300,000 this month, after reaching 200,000 only a few weeks ago. Layoffs are accelerating: according to Techcrunch’s Layoff Tracker, it took four months to reach 100,000, and only five weeks more to reach 200,000. Three weeks later, the number was 300,000. At the rate job losses are accelerating, the next 100,000 cuts will come in two weeks or less. That’s astounding. The recent layoffs were at Pioneer (10,000), Cisco (3,000), Panasonic (15,000), NEC (20,000), Electronic Arts (1100) and AOL (700). Pioneer’s layoffs represent one quarter of its workforce. But some people are getting hired. ReadWriteWeb reports that in 2009 there have been 293 tech new hires in 2009, mostly in marketing, IT/software, and social media/publishing.

This is, we hope, only a small slice of the hirings – hopefully all the hired and hiring will report, as the industry needs all the good news it can get right now. One new hire for every ten thousand firings does not a pretty picture paint.

In other economic news, the White House has launched, a site tracking President Obama’s stimulus plan spending. Hopefully, the money set aside for tech will soon be spent.

Another casuality of the recession is Sony's PlayStation and Sony Style stores in San Francisco's Metreon mall. Bad news for techies, and perhaps bad news for downtown as well, as both were anchor stores at the Metreon, which forms part of the core of SF's Yerba Buena Gardens.

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