Just this week, Alphabet, the parent company of Google, Microsoft (MSFT) and Vox Media announced layoffs that affect more than 22,000 workers.
Their moves follow job cuts earlier this month at Amazon, Goldman Sachs and Salesforce. More companies are expected to follow suit as companies that have been hiring aggressively over the past two years are braking and, in many cases, backtracking.
The cuts contrast sharply with 2022, which had the second-highest level of job gains on record, at 4.5 million. But last year’s employment numbers began to decline as the year progressed, with the December jobs report showing the weakest monthly gains in two years.
The highest level of hiring was in 2021, when 6.7 million jobs were added. But that follows the first year of the pandemic, when the United States effectively shut down and 9.3 million jobs were lost.
The current layoffs span multiple sectors, from media companies to Wall Street, but so far they hit Big Tech particularly hard.
This contrasts with job losses during the pandemic, which saw consumer shopping habits shift towards e-commerce and other online services during the lockdown. Tech companies have embarked on a hiring spree.
But now workers are returning to their offices and in-person shopping is rebounding. Add to that the growing likelihood of a recession, rising interest rates and weak demand due to rising prices, and tech companies are cutting costs.
January was filled with headlines announcing company after company job cuts. Here is a list of layoffs this month – so far.
Google’s parent company (GOOGL) said on Friday it was laying off 12,000 workers across all product areas and regions, or 6% of its workforce. Alphabet has added 50,000 workers over the past two years as the pandemic has created greater demand for its services. But recent recession fears are pushing advertisers out of their core digital advertising business.
“Over the past two years, we have experienced periods of dramatic growth,” CEO Sundar Pichai said in an email to employees. “To match and fuel that growth, we hired for a different economic reality than we face today.”
The tech giant is laying off 10,000 employees, the company said in a securities filing on Wednesday. Globally, Microsoft has 221,000 full-time employees, including 122,000 based in the United States.
CEO Satya Nadella told a conference in Davos that “no one can defy gravity” and that Microsoft could not ignore the weakness in the global economy.
“We live in a time of significant change, and as I meet with customers and partners, some things are clear,” Nadella wrote in a memo. “First, if we’ve seen customers accelerate their digital spend during the pandemic, we’re now seeing them optimize their digital spend to do more with less.”
The editor of the information and opinion site Vox, the tech site The Verge and New York Magazine, announced on Friday that it was cutting 7% of its workforce, or about 130 people.
“We are experiencing and expecting more of the same economic and financial pressures as others in the media and technology industries,” chief executive Jim Bankoff said in a memo.
The layoffs are also hitting Wall Street hard. The world’s largest asset manager is cutting 500 jobs, or less than 3% of its workforce.
Today’s “unprecedented market environment” stands in stark contrast to its attitude over the past three years, when it increased its workforce by around 22%. Its last major series of budget cuts dates back to 2019.
The bank will lay off up to 3,200 workers this month amid slowing global business activity. More than a third of the cuts are expected to come from the company’s business and banking units. Goldman Sachs (FADXX) had nearly 50,000 employees at the end of the third quarter of last year.
The crypto brokerage announced in early January that it was cutting 950 people, or nearly one in five employees from its workforce. The move comes just months after Coinbase laid off 1,100 people.
Although Bitcoin had a strong start to the year, crypto companies were hit by significant drops in the prices of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
McDonald’s (MCD), which has thrived during the pandemic, plans to cut some of its staff, CEO Chris Kempczinski said this month.
“We will be evaluating roles and staffing levels in parts of the organization and there will be tough discussions and decisions ahead,” Kempszinski said, outlining a plan to “remove internal barriers, become more innovative and reduce work that does not correspond to the company’s priorities.
The online retailer of subscription custom clothing said it plans to lay off 20% of its salaried staff.
“We are going to lose many talented team members across the company and I am truly sorry,” Stitch Fix (SFIX) founder and former CEO Katrina Lake wrote in a blog post.
Early in the new year, Amazon (AMZN) announced plans to lay off more than 18,000 employees. Human resources departments to company management Amazon (AMZN) stores will be affected.
“Companies that last long go through different phases. They’re not in heavy staff expansion mode every year,” CEO Andy Jassy said in a note to employees.
Amazon has boomed during the pandemic and has been hiring rapidly over the past few years. But demand has cooled as consumers return to their offline lives and battle high prices. Amazon says it has more than 800,000 employees.
At the New York Times DealBook summit in November, Jassy said he believed Amazon “made the right decision” about building its infrastructure quickly, but said its hiring spree was a “lesson for everyone”.
Even as he spoke, Amazon warehouse workers who helped organize the company’s first-ever U.S. union at a Staten Island factory last year were picketing Jassy’s appearance outside the venue. of the conference.
“We really want to take this opportunity to let him know that the workers are waiting and that we are ready to negotiate our first contract,” Amazon union president Chris Smalls said, calling the protest a “welcome party.” for Jassy.
Salesforce (CRM) will cut about 10% of its workforce from its more than 70,000 employees and reduce its real estate footprint. In a letter to employees, the president and co-CEO of Salesforce (CRM), Marc Benioff, admitted to having increased the company’s headcount too much in the beginning. in the pandemic.
– Clare Duffy, Matt Egan, Oliver Darcy, Julia Horowitz, Catherine Thorbecke, Paul R. La Monica, Nathaniel Meyersohn, Parija Kavilanz, CNN’s Danielle Wiener-Bronner and Hanna Ziady contributed to this report.