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Friday, 11 October, 2002, 11:34 GMT 12:34 UK
Lucent to axe 10,000 jobs
Lucent chip
Lucent makes components for the telecoms industry
US-based telecoms equipment maker Lucent has announced plans to lay off 10,000 workers.

The lay offs, which come on top of several job cutting exercises this year, form part of a cost-cutting drive aimed at countering weak demand in Lucent's markets.

News of the latest job cuts came as Lucent warned that it would rack up bigger than expected losses during the latest three-month period.

It added that it would write off a $3bn decline in the value of its pension fund against profits.

The job cuts are expected to take effect by the end of next financial year, bringing Lucent's total workforce down to about 35,000.

Rise and fall

Lucent, formerly the research arm of US telecommunications giant Bell, prospered during the 1990s boom as telecoms firms worldwide rushed to expand their networks.

But the firm's fortunes have waned in line with those of the telecoms companies, which have slashed investment on new equipment over the past two years in order to work off heavy debts.

Last month, Lucent's share price fell below $1 as investors took the view that the long-awaited telecoms sector recovery is still some way off.

The company crashed to a $7.8bn loss, including a one-off charge of about $5.8bn, for the three months to July, and also reported a 16% decline in sales.

On Friday, Lucent said it expected to start making money again in 2003.

News that Lucent plans to swing the jobs axe again came as French newspaper reports claimed that France Telecom may cut up to 20,000 jobs over the next four years.

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 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Ian Pollock
"The savage downturn in the worldwide telcommunications industry over the last two years has hit Lucent hard"
See also:

23 Jul 02 | Business
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11 Apr 02 | Business
22 Jan 02 | Business
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