Top 10 BIGGEST layoffs in the 21st Century

The 2017 retail apocalypse doesn’t have anything on 2008. According to this Newser report, Citigroup alone laid off 50,000 workers…listed below are the top 10 biggest layoffs in the 21st Century. Just wait until the robots takeover, the numbers will be much bigger.

  1. Citigroup in 2008 (50,000)
  2. US Army in 2011 (50,000)
  3. General Motors in 2009 (47,000)
  4. US Air Force in 2005 (40,000)
  5. US Army in 2015 (40,000)
  6. Kmart in 2003 (35,000)
  7. Circuit City in 2009 (34,000)
  8. Ford in 2002 (34,000)
  9. Boeing in 2001 (31,000)
  10. US Postal Service in 2010 (30,000)

Harley-Davidson announces LAYOFFS after earnings fall from weaker U.S. sales

Add Harley-Davidson to the list of struggling companies. According to this Journal Sentinel report approximately 180 production jobs will be eliminated.

Harley-Davidson Inc. is eliminating about 180 production jobs at its U.S. plants, union officials said Tuesday, with the Menomonee Falls and Kansas City plants expected to be hit the hardest.

The 183 permanent job cuts are coming in the next couple of months as the company throttles back production following weak U.S. motorcycle sales.

Temporary furloughs also are expected this fall at the Menomonee Falls plant that employs about 1,000 production workers.

“It’s not looking too good at this point,” said Ross Winklbauer, a sub-district director for the United Steelworkers union.

“We did not see this coming,” he said.

Earlier Tuesday, Harley said soft U.S. motorcycle sales resulted in a disappointing fiscal quarter ended June 25.

Net income fell 7.7% to $258.9 million, or $1.48 per share, in the three-month period ended June 25, from $280.4 million, or $1.55 per share, a year earlier.

Revenue from motorcycles and related products fell to $1.58 billion from $1.67 billion.

Harley said its U.S. sales were down 9.3% from the same period a year ago.

The company, which previously forecast “flat to down modestly” full-year bike shipments, said it now expects to ship 241,000 to 246,000 motorcycles in 2017 — down 6% to 8% from 2016.

The new projection includes a 10% to 20% decline in third-quarter production.

Etsy to slash hundreds of jobs

More bad news for the economy. According to this CNBC report online retailer Etsy will be cutting hundreds of jobs.

Etsy, the online market for handmade, vintage and craft items, will cut 15 percent of its workforce.

It’s the second wave of job cuts. Combined with a round in May, the reductions amount to about 22 percent of the staff, according to a press release.

About 230 jobs will be eliminated in the two cuts. Most layoffs this round will primarily be in the marketing, product management and general and administrative departments out of the company’s Brooklyn headquarters.

Etsy expects the latest severance charges and other exit costs to total $6 million to $8.8 million, according to a press release. It said the May cuts cost about $6.5 million to $8 million.

Everyone is FREAKING out about AMAZON’S plant to cut jobs at Whole Foods

And rightfully so. According to this Chicago Tribune report Bezos is looking to shed the chain of high prices and also workers.

When Amazon.com completes its acquisition of Whole Foods Market, Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos will try to keep the grocer’s reputation for premium fresh foods while cutting prices to shed its “Whole Paycheck” image, a source said.

Amazon expects to reduce headcount and change inventory to lower prices and make Whole Foods competitive with Wal-Mart Stores and other big-box retailers, according to a person with knowledge of the company’s grocery plans. That included potentially using technology to eliminate cashiers. An Amazon spokesman denied any job cuts were planned.

Amazon, known for its competitive prices, is trying to attract more low- and middle-income shoppers with its grocery push. The Seattle-based company already offers discounted Amazon Prime memberships for people receiving government assistance and is part of a pilot program to deliver groceries to food-stamp recipients.

Whole Foods has already been reducing prices to try to turn around its worst sales slump since going public in 1992. It has four “365 by Whole Foods Market” stores that are cheaper to build and operate than a traditional location and offer lower-priced items aimed at younger shoppers.

Amazon is considering extending the cost-cutting effort with the no-checkout technology it’s developing at its Seattle convenience store, “AmazonGo,” according to the person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named because the plans are private. The technology lets people pay with smartphones without seeing a cashier or going to a checkout kiosk, which would help Amazon differentiate itself in the brick-and-mortar setting and reduce labor costs at Whole Foods stores. The employees remaining would help improve the shopping experience, the person said.

Bank of America is laying off employees…but wont say how many

More bad news for everybody. According to this Deon Roberts report, Bank of America is bracing for big layoffs.

Bank of America is laying off an undisclosed number of technology workers in Charlotte, the latest job cuts to hit the second-largest U.S. bank.

Employees were notified of the layoffs this week, sources with direct knowledge of the decisions told the Observer on Wednesday. The cuts affect the Charlotte-based bank’s global technology and operations unit, which is headed by executive Cathy Bessant, who also sits in Charlotte.

One technology employee who works in Charlotte said employees notified Tuesday include full-time project managers who oversaw software projects, including testing and upgrades, from start to finish. Bessant oversees a workforce of roughly 95,000 employees and contractors worldwide, including more than 6,500 in Charlotte.

“Like all companies, we are in a changing marketplace, and we must adjust our workforce to meet those needs,” bank spokesman Dan Frahm said in a statement.

Frahm declined to provide the number of employees being laid off, citing company policy. Those affected have been given two weeks’ notice and are eligible for company severance, he said.

The employees are also encouraged to apply for other positions at Bank of America, but for those unable to find one, the bank will work closely with them to assist in locating a new role, he said. Bank of America has more than 600 open positions in Charlotte, he said.

The cuts come a week after home-improvement retailer Lowe’s announced layoffs of about 125 corporate tech workers, primarily at its headquarters in Mooresville.

Bank of America has trimmed about 75,000 jobs under CEO Brian Moynihan, who has pushed to slash costs at a bank that expanded through decades of acquisitions before he took the helm in January 2010. As of the end of March, it employed 209,000 worldwide, including about 15,000 in Charlotte. Even as the bank has cut jobs in some areas, it has added positions elsewhere, such as sales specialists in branches.

While Bank of America has cited attrition as one factor behind the lower headcount, it has also pointed to efficiency efforts in previous rounds of layoffs affecting technology jobs in Charlotte. Moynihan has been seeking to improve efficiencies under an ongoing program launched in 2014 called Simplify and Improve.

In addition, last July the bank unveiled a new cost-cutting goal to reduce annual noninterest expenses to roughly $53 billion by the end of 2018, compared with about $56.3 billion over the previous 12 months. Bank of America announced the goal in reporting second-quarter earnings.

Nike announces 1,400 layoffs as discretionary money dries up

More bad news for retail. According to this Matthew Kish report Nike will be laying off 1,400 employees.

Nike on Thursday said it will cut 2 percent of its global workforce as it restructures to more quickly get products in the hands of consumers and respond to a rapidly changing consumer landscape.

The company previously announced the basic strategy, which it refers to as a “Triple Double” of speed, on its last earnings call.

Like other retailers, Nike is adapting to a consumer shift to online shopping. It’s also battling increased competition from a resurgent Adidas.

The layoffs will likely significantly affect the company’s Washington County headquarters. Nike reported 70,700 global workers on its last annual report. A 2 percent reduction would amount to about 1,400 layoffs.

Nike last month said it had 12,000 workers in Washington County. It is the second-largest private employer in the state after Intel Corp.

The strategic shifts include the creation of a Consumer Direct Offense, which will focus on getting personalized products to market.

“The future of sport will be decided by the company that obsesses the needs of the evolving consumer,” said CEO and Chairman Mark Parker, in a news release. “Through the Consumer Direct Offense, we’re getting even more aggressive in the digital marketplace, targeting key markets and delivering product faster than ever.”

Other retailers are also responding aggressively to shifts in behavior as more shopping is done online. Columbia Sportswear continues to role out changes in an ongoing reorganization.

Children’s retailer Gymboree files bankruptcy, closing up to 450 stores

More bad news for retail. According to this USA Today report children’s retailer Gymboree has filed for bankruptcy.

Children’s clothing chain Gymboree filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection late Sunday, aiming to slash its debts and close hundreds of stores amid crushing pressure on retailers.

Gymboree said it plans to remain in business but will close 375 to 450 of its 1,281 stores, according to a court filing. Gymboree employs more than 11,000 people, including 10,500 hourly workers.

The bankruptcy was widely expected after Gymboree refused to pay certain bills in recent months, placing the retailer on a collision course with creditors. The retailer said it hopes to slash $1 billion of its $1.4 billion in debt and to win approval for its plan by Sept. 24.

“We expect to move through this process quickly and emerge as a stronger organization that is better positioned in today’s evolving retail landscape, with the right size store footprint and greater financial flexibility to invest in Gymboree’s long-term growth,” Gymboree CEO Daniel Griesemer said in a statement.

Like other retailers, Gymboree buckled amid declining mall traffic, fixed rental costs and online competition. Other mall retailers that have recently succumbed to bankruptcy include Payless ShoeSource, Rue21 and The Limited.

Global financial services giant Credit Suisse predicted last week that up to 25% of nation’s malls could close by 2022.

Cisco announces 1,100 more layoffs as business continues to dwindle

Photo Credit: Prayitno Flickr

Cisco has seen better days. According to this ABC report the company will cut 1,100 more jobs.

Cisco Systems Inc. said Wednesday that it is laying off 1,100 more workers, deepening job losses at the internet gear maker battling declining revenue.

The new round of layoffs comes on top of the 5,500 jobs Cisco announced it was cutting in August. That amounted to about 7 percent of its workforce at the time.

Cisco sells routers, switches, software and services business and has seen its business hurt as more of its corporate customers rely on remote data centers for their computing needs instead of online networks maintained on their own premises.

The company based in San Jose, California, on Wednesday reported revenue of $11.94 billion for its fiscal third quarter that ended in April. That was down from $12 billion a year earlier. It said it expects its revenue to decline 4 to 6 percent in the quarter ending in July compared to the same 2016 period.

BLOODBATH: India’s IT market crashes, 500,000-600,000 LAYOFFS over the next THREE YEARS

Very bad news coming out of India. According to this ZD report, approximately 500,000 IT professionals will be losing their job over the next three years. To make matters worse there are now reports that IBM India will also be dumping 5,000 employees over the next few quarters.

Over the last week, the one thing that Indian IT professionals were most dreading began to be talked about in earnest.

First, Mint newspaper disclosed that after conducting interviews with 22 current and former employees across seven Indian IT companies, it was clear to them that at least 56,000 engineers would be given pink slips this year. That figure is double the number let go last year.

Apparently, one immediate sign of the axe about to fall is if you are given a “low rating” by your company that then impacts subsequent opportunities at the firm — in other words, a pre-cursor towards being fired.

This year, for example, Mint said that 15,000 of Cognizant’s employees have found themselves placed in the bottom-most tier, or bucket IV, while Infosys has deemed 3,000 of its senior managers needing improvement. Mint said that in a normal year, around 1 to 1.5 percent of an Indian IT company’s employees would be shown the door, but this year that figure is going to be between 2 and 6 percent. None of the Indian companies confirmed the report.

Then, a few days ago, the managing director of executive search firm Head Hunters, K Lakshmikanth, dropped a bombshell. “Contrary to media reports of 56,000 IT professionals to lose jobs this year, the actual job cuts will be between 1.75 lakh (or 175,000) and 2 lakh (200,000) per year in the next three years, due to under-preparedness in adapting to newer technologies.”

IT Giant IBM to layoff 5000 Employees

The ongoing layoffs by the leading IT companies in India is continuing, in fact on an increasing note with IBM joining the league newly. In a major development, sources close to IBM disclosed that the company may release at least 5,000 employees over the next few quarters.

“The process has already started. Managers have been asked to identify under performers,” says a person close to the development.

Though the IT major didn’t confirm the exact number of employees to be impacted, it further said that, “Re-Skilling and rebalancing are two ongoing processes as we accelerate the benefits of cognitive and cloud technologies for clients around the world.”

Currently, 1,50,000 persons are employed in IBM India. With this decision, close to 30,000 IT jobs are in danger this year.

Ford To Layoff 20,000 Workers after profits DROP 35% in 2017

According to this Washington Examiner report Ford is planning to layoff 20,000 workers worldwide after reporting a 35% drop in Q1 profits.

Ford Motor Company is expected to announce later this week plans to gut 10 percent of its 200,000-person salaried workforce in North American and Asia, according to multiple reports late Monday.

The layoffs will go into effect by Oct. 1 and employees will receive early retirement incentives.

Hourly workers and those on the production line will not be effected.

Ford recently announced plans to cut $3 billion in costs after its profits in the first quarter of 2017 dropped 35 percent to $1.6 billion, according to a statement the company released April 27. It’s the first time in seven years since the recession that the company saw a decline in profits.

“Reducing costs and becoming as lean and efficient as possible also remain part of that work,” the company said in a statement. “We have not announced any new people efficiency actions, nor do we comment on speculation.”