US glass giant Corning cuts 4,900 jobs

Date: 29 January 2009
Source: Google.news
US glass maker Corning said Tuesday it will slash 4,900 jobs this year in a restructuring to cope with the US recession, reporting unexpectedly sharp plunges in fourth-quarter earnings.

Corning Inc., which makes liquid crystal displays, fiber optics and speciality ceramics among other products, said it will reduce permanent staff by 3,500, or 13 percent of the total, and cut 1,400 temporary jobs.The job cuts were announced as the Corning, New York-based firm reported fourth-quarter net profit plummeted 65 percent to 249 million dollars from a year ago, underperforming consensus market expectations.“We experienced a significant momentum shift in many of our core businesses in the fourth quarter as the recession took hold,” Wendell Weeks, Corning chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.“As a result, we are adjusting our operations to reflect anticipated lower sales in 2009.We are also moving aggressively to reduce operating expenses and capital spending to continue to meet our goals of positive free cash flow and a healthy balance sheet.”

The company said it would book restructuring charges of between 115 and 165 million dollars in the 2009 first quarter, but expected to realize annualized cost savings of 150-220 million dollars.

James Flaws, vice chairman and chief financial officer, said the company expects “a slow start” to 2009, citing a drop in display volume of up to 25 percent “as the supply chain continues to reduce inventory during the seasonally weaker retail sales quarter.”

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