AT&T to slash 12,000 jobs

AT&T announced it will cut 12,000 jobs throughout the next year, take a $600 million charge in the fourth quarter related to those cuts, and also will cut its capital spending in 2009. AT&T and other telcos have been weathering the economic downturn fairly well so far, but recently fear about 2009 has been seeping into the industry. AT&T's move comes one day after industry analyst Nikos Theodosopoulos lowered his carrier capex forecast for 2009 and suggested AT&T could lead the way downward.

The telco giant did not say how much it would reduce its capex, and more specifics may not come until its fourth quarter earnings report in January. AT&T's statement on the job cuts and capex reduction cited the obvious economic pressures, but also "a changing business mix," and a need for a "more streamlined organizational structure."

It may be hard to tack a positive note on any of this, but the company did say it will continue to hire in growth areas, such as wireless, video and broadband.

For more:
- Here's AT&T's statement

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