Dot-com firms in August cut 1,193 jobs. That's just 557 fewer layoffs than the 1,750 job cuts the sector suffered in July. The layoff cycle has been on a roller coaster ride all year, according to John Challenger, CEO of the Chicago-based outplacement firm, Challenger, Gray & Christmas, which has been tracking layoffs in the high-tech industry. August was a little surprising in that the numbers didn't drop as much as expected -- or hoped for.
''It's too early to tell if the two consecutive 1,000-plus months are the beginning of higher dot-com job cuts,'' says Challenger. ''There's certainly the potential as companies that survived the dot-com collapse are now struggling to survive the overall downturn in the economy.''
The industry has been suffering for more than a year now. But despite the poor numbers logged in July and August, they're still better than those logged the year before.
The majority of the August dot-com job cuts were announced by companies offering consumer and business services, as well as firms specializing in Internet-related technology. Together, services and technology firms announced 1,160 job cuts or 97% of the month's total.
''It's reflective of what's going on in the economy,'' Challenger adds. ''One day it sounds optimistic. The next day there's pessimism. The dot-com layoffs have been mirroring that trend.''
Challenger Gray & Christmas has recorded 152,990 cuts since the company began tracking dot-com job cuts in December, 1999.