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Report: Amazon Set to Lay Off Hundreds

Though the online player still has aggressive growth plans, including a second headquarters that will employ 50,000 workers, Amazon is currently eliminating hundreds of jobs, according to the Seattle Times.

Citing unnamed sources, the publication said hundreds will be let go from the company’s headquarters, while others will be trimmed from the global operations. The people with information about the development say the layoffs will be concentrated in Amazon’s consumer retail sectors.

An Amazon spokesperson told the Times, “As part of our annual planning process, we are making head count adjustments across the company — small reductions in a couple of places and aggressive hiring in many others. For affected employees, we work to find roles in the areas where we are hiring.”

Layoffs at the company are rare. Amazon ended 2017 with 566,000 employees, 66 percent more than the year prior, according to its Q4 earnings report.

This rapid growth is blamed for the need to make the headcount changes, which follow recent hiring freezes for several groups.

Already, some Amazon businesses have made cuts, including a few handful at Zappos and a few hundred at Quidsi. Meanwhile, the company’s web services division has reportedly received the green light to start hiring again.

Some employees say these workforce changes are all happening on a backdrop of stress and fear as supervisors and groups are under increased scrutiny. The pressure is only expected to mount as Amazon embarks on its yearly performance reviews, a process that some believe is sometimes used to trim employee counts, though the company denies it.

Amazon is just the latest retailer this year to announce job cuts. Walmart plans to eliminate 1,000 jobs between this year and next. Sears continues to cut its ranks with 300 more employees to be let go this month. Bon-Ton is trimming its marketing team by 63 members, and Tesco is slashing 1,700 store and fulfillment jobs.