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Hitachi Announces Lay Offs

8/31/2001 11:50:00 AM Eastern

Tokyo - Japanese electronics giant Hitachi today joined the growing procession of Japanese companies announcing layoffs and poor earnings saying it would lay off almost 15,000 workers and post a loss in excess of $1 billion this year.

The job cuts will trim Hitachi's 341,000 work force payroll by 4.3 and take effect by next April. Japan-based Hitachi employees will endure the brunt of the cuts, while 4,500 overseas workers will be let go.

This move was necessary do to the slow demand for electronic devices, semiconductors and displays, the company said.

'The U.S. downturn is lasting much longer than we expected. We cannot hope for any positive change soon,' said Hitachi president Etsushiko Shoyama.

Hitachi's downsizing and poor financial news came followed similar reports from Toshiba and NEC. Toshiba said earlier this week that it would slash about 18,000 workers.