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Economic news round up

by Scott Bicheno on 27 January 2009, 10:25

Tags: Philips (AMS:PHIA), Siemens

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Not all bad

Job losses have led the news agenda at the start of this week, with the struggles of steel-maker Corus leading to many UK redundancies and many other companies such as Caterpillar ING and Pfizer/Wyeth also announcing large redundancies.

Of course the tech industry had a bad week last week last week, with Intel, AMD and Microsoft all laying people off, and it's far from unscathed this week too.

Technology innovator Philips announced a quarterly loss of €1.5 billion yesterday and said it was going to cut 6,000 jobs. Meanwhile it has been widely reported that IBM is axing 2,800 Texas Instruments is getting rid of 3,400 people and US phone operator Sprint Nextel will lighten its payroll burden to the tune of 8,000 employees.

It hasn't been all bad news for the tech sector, however. Today German industrial giant Siemens says it "got off to a good start" in 2009 and managed to grow its profits by 20 percent. Software company VMware managed even more impressive year on year profit growth of 42 percent.

The last quarter of 2008 was when everyone realised the true extent of this economic mess and made contingencies for the worst case scenario. By the time all this carnage is finished, companies should be as well positioned as possible to deal with the new economic realities.