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AT&T waves goodbye to 4,600 staffers

Home phone? Go home

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AT&T is sacking 4,650 staffers, about 1.5 per cent of its 310,000-strong workforce. Wearing the pink slips, mostly, are managers in the home landline business who don't talk to customers.

The born again telecoms monopoly thinks it has too many Morlocks on the payroll, following the reunification of three baby Bells: SBC, AT&T and Bell South.

But it reckons that the headcount will stay stable in 2008 as it employs more Elois to talk to people who buy stuff in growth parts of the business. Presumably that's business services, cell phones and triple-play TV/ broadband/voice stuff. And call centers. Never forget call centers.

The "streamlining", as AT&T dubs the managerial purge in today's SEC filing, will take a $374m chunk out of Q1 earnings. They're published next week. ®

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