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Last Year Saw the Worst Decline in Tech Jobs Since 2009

Layoffs at Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard pushed the number of tech jobs cut to north of 100,000.

The tech sector may be a growing segment of the economy, but 2014 was the worst year for job cuts in the technology sector since 2009, according to a new report from Challenger, Gray and Christmas, an outplacement firm that helps people find new jobs after they’ve been let go.

Corporate restructuring at big tech firms like Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft pushed the number of jobs eliminated in tech fields to 100,757, a rise of 77 percent over 2013. It was the first time that number rose above 100,000 since 2009, the first full year of the recent recession.

The biggest portion of those cuts occurred in the computer industry where 59,523 jobs were eliminated. Another 19,408 jobs were cut in the electronics industry, more than double the amount from the prior year. Cuts in the telecom industry rose 68 percent to 21,821.

Lost tech jobs accounted for 21 percent of the total number of jobs — 483,171 — eliminated during 2014. Microsoft was responsible for 18,000 cut, and HP dropped 16,000 positions during the year, according to the firm. Cisco Systems, Intel and Symantec were among the other firms who announced large-scale layoffs during the year.

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