Thursday job cuts could exceed 13,000

The toll continues, with about 110,000 cuts reported so far this week.

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By Aaron Smith, staff writer

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NEW YORK ( -- The onslaught of job losses continued Thursday as employers announced a toll that could exceed 13,000.

Drugmaker AstraZeneca, photo products maker Eastman Kodak, aircraft company Cessna, truck maker Oshkosh, retailer Bon-Ton Stores and investment services provider Charles Schwab each said they would reduce payrolls.

Their workers were just the latest casualties in a savage week for the job market, with more than 15,000 cuts announced on Wednesday, 11,500 on Tuesday, and more than 71,000 on Monday.

Those jobs join the 2.6 million that the nation's economy lost last year. The companies typically blame the recession for their downsizing.

AstraZeneca: On Thursday, AstraZeneca (AZN), based in Britain, said it would cut an additional 6,000 jobs worldwide. This is part of its plan to eliminate 15,000 positions by 2013.

The 6,000 new cuts are on top of the 7,600 reductions announced in 2007, and the 1,400 announced in 2008, the company said.

The cutbacks occurred in spite of the company's moderate increases to fourth-quarter sales and core operating profit that AstraZeneca also reported Thursday.

"The expansion in the scope of our restructuring efforts is another important step towards sustaining our long-term competitiveness," AstraZeneca Chief Executive David Brennan said in a prepared statement.

The drugmaker's stock fell 7%.

Eastman Kodak: Kodak said it will cut 2,000 to 3,000 more jobs in 2009, bringing the total number of positions it will eliminate this year to 3,500 to 4,500.

The total job losses will amount to between 14% and 18% of its staff, the company said.

Kodak (EK, Fortune 500), based in Rochester, N.Y., made the announcement as it reported a fourth-quarter loss of $133 million, or 50 cents per share. The company's stock dropped 26% after the report.

Kodak blamed its woes on the recession, lackluster consumer spending, reduced business investment and fluctuations in the value of the dollar.

Late last year, Kodak announced 1,500 job cuts slated for 2009, according to company spokesman David Lanzillo.

Cessna: Cessna, a division of the aviation, aerospace and defense company Textron (TXT, Fortune 500), said it would cut 2,000 jobs.

This is in addition to the 2,600 job cuts that Cessna announced earlier this month.

Cessna spokesman Bob Stangarone said the reductions will occur across all levels of the company, with 4,000 in Wichita, Kan., 300 in Bend, Ore., 200 in Independence, Kan., and 100 in Columbus, Ga.

Textron's stock plunged by nearly one-third in afternoon trading.

Bon-Ton Stores: Department store operator Bon-Ton Stores (BONT) said it would eliminate about 1,150 jobs as part of a plan to save $70 million.

The company, based in York, Pa., also said it would get rid of 2008 executive bonuses, cut merit-based raises for 2009 and suspend contributions to the 401(k) plan.

Chief Executive Bud Bergren, in a press release, blamed "additional pressure on the retail market brought on by significant deterioration in both the financial markets and the macroeconomic environment."

Oshkosh: Oshkosh (OSK, Fortune 500), the Wisconsin-based builder of fire engines, dump trucks and military vehicles, announced 1,050 new job cuts, in addition to reductions announced last year.

The company's stock plunged by nearly 30%.

This brings the Oshkosh total to 2,400 job cuts since last year. Company spokeswoman Ann Stawski said the cuts have already taken place, bringing the current workforce to 13,300.

Stawski said the reductions are a result of a downturn in residential and commercial construction.

Oshkosh announced the job cuts as it reported quarterly sales of $1.39 billion and a net loss of about $20 million, or 28 cents per share. This is compared to the year-ago quarter, when the company reported sales of $1.5 billion and net income of about $37 million, or 50 cents per share.

Schwab: Charles Schwab (SCHW, Fortune 500) spokesman Greg Gable said his company will cut 500 to 600 jobs in the current quarter.

The brokerage warned about the cuts last month, but didn't specify the tally until Thursday, Gable said.

The company's stock fell 12%.

-- CNN's Emily Anderson contributed to this report. To top of page

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