Dotcom job cuts hit new record in December

By : |December 28, 2000 0

NEW YORK: Job cuts at Internet companies rose 19 per cent in December to a
record 10,459, according to a report released on Wednesday by recruitment firm
Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.

The previous one-month high was November’s 8,789 cuts.

Challenger, Gray has recorded 41,515 job cuts at 496 companies since December
1999, when it began tracking layoffs in the dotcom world.

For the 12-month period, the services sector, such as consulting, finance and
information, accounted for 19,535 cuts, or 47 per cent of the total. Retail
accounted for 9,523 cuts, or 23 per cent.

“With the economy slowing, not to mention a general wariness among
investors over the prospect of dotcoms, it is unlikely that we will see a return
any time soon to the high-flying days when it seemed that a new dotcom was going
public every other hour,” John Challenger, the firm’s chief executive, said
in a statement.

Recent casualties included: Internet news site Salon.com, which reduced its
staff by 20 per cent, or 15 employees.

Digital media software maker Sonic Foundry, which cut its staff by 40 per
cent, to 245 employees, citing a slowdown in the personal computer market.

Cavion Technologies reduced its staff by 80 per cent. The company, which
provides a secure network to credit unions offering banking products over the
Internet, also said it could seek bankruptcy protection.

Consulting firm Agency.com, which eliminated 190 jobs as part of a
restructuring.

E-mail marketer MessageMedia Inc., which cut 100 jobs.

Internet search engine Ask Jeeves Inc., which cut 25 per cent of its work
force of 180.

(C) Reuters Limited 2000.

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