Job cut announcements in the technology sector more than doubled during the quarter ending June 30, rising to the highest level in a year, according to a special semi-annual report on tech-sector layoffs released Tuesday by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
Between April and June, employers in the computer, electronics and telecommunications industries announced plans to cut 20,491 jobs from their payrolls. That is 144 percent more than the 8,392 job cuts announced in the first quarter of the year and the highest quarterly total since the second quarter of 2012, when technology firms reported plans to cut payrolls by 39,164.
The second-quarter surge was led by computer firms, which saw job cuts increase 365 percent from 3,526 in the first quarter to 16,404 in the latest quarter. Electronics firms also increased the pace of job cutting in the second quarter, announcing plans to eliminate 2,344 jobs, up 68 percent from 1,395 in the first quarter.
Despite the dramatic increase in tech-sector job cuts last quarter, the overall pace of downsizing has slowed from a year ago. Through the first six months of 2013, technology employers announced 28,883 job cuts, which is 44 percent fewer than the 51,529 layoffs recorded in the first half of 2012.