Dot-com job cuts soar in July

Planned US dot-com job cuts jumped to 1750 in July, a 156% increase of the number of cuts announced in June, says outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

          Planned dot-com job cuts jumped to 1750 in July, a 156% increase of the number of cuts announced in June, says outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

          The Chicago-based firm says this is the third time this year that job cuts at internet companies increased significantly over the previous month. Increases in dot-com jobs cuts were also recorded in March and May, Challenger says.

          The July figure was still 80% lower than the 8697 job cuts announced in July 2001. So far in 2002, the total number of dot-com job cuts is 9357, 80% lower than the 82,896 cuts announced in the first seven months of 2001, according to Challenger.

          Challenger says internet firms offering consumer services reported 700 job cuts, the highest number in July, followed by technology firms with 498, media companies with 255, retail firms with 128 and financial companies with 99.

          There have been 151,797 dot-com job cuts recorded since December 1999, when Challenger first started tracking them. More than half of those cuts were announced in the first seven months of 2001.

          "The wavelike pattern of dot-com job cuts is a phenomenon that we have not seen in our regular job-cut tracking," says John A Challenger, the firm's CEO.

          "It is indicative of the volatility that has enveloped this sector since its beginnings. It seems that even the strongest dot-com companies today are still only hanging on by a thread."

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