Tech Layoffs Reached 100,000

By December 16, 2008

Yahoo’s long-expected layoff last week of 1,500 employees marked the latest mass firings in tech. Tech losses, whether in the form of layoffs, companies closing their doors, or being bought-and-dissolved (e.g. Pownce), are still accelerating. Tech layoffs have now passed 100,000, reports Techcrunch, who have been keeping a scorecard, which I first became aware of after Sequoia confirmed that the good times were indeed dead. In all, 109,629 people lave been laid off since August 27th (as of December 12th). “After a lull around Thanksgiving, December has seen some of the biggest layoffs in the tech industry yet since the economy entered its tailspin in the fall,” writes TC’s Erick Schonfeld.

The largest layoffs thus far have been Sony (18,000), AT&T (12,000), Dell (8,900), and Sun Microsystems (5,000). The 109,626 layoffs in the last four months represents roughly the same amount of job losses as in all of 2001, the height of the dot-com bust. Overall, December job cuts in America were at 115,416 on December 12th. Fortune 500 companies have cut 85,753 jobs so far this month, according to Forbes.

533,000 Amecian jobs were cut in November, and nationwide unemployment claims are now the highest they’ve been in 26 years, and are sure to keep mounting. So far, 573,000 have been filed this year.

Reverberations of the tech crisis are being felt in the Valley in other ways, especially as conventions – a big source of Bay Area income – are cancelled or vendors drop out. The total losses in revenue will be hundreds of millions of dollars for the city, hundreds of thousands of dollars in free swag for the media.

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