In an SEC filing on Friday afternoon, Rochester based competitive telecom operator PAETEC (PAET) gave notice that it is downsizing by 5%, or ‘approximately 222 full-time employees’. As Christmas seasons go, this one is turning out pretty poorly so far in the telecom job market.
It actually isn’t clear to me that this move was induced by the economic downturn. Yes, I realize the media is in the midst of a frenzy over the state of the job market and rising unemployment. Yes, I do remember that PAETEC substantially reduced guidance back in August in one of the more dramatic summer events that foreshadowed the financial catastrophy. And yes I do remember that AT&T just did some economy-related downsizing of its own and that more are probably coming across the sector.
But remember that PAETEC bought McLeodUSA earlier this year and has been integrating operations. I feel sure that the company would have gone through a similar headcount reduction even if the economy wasn’t in tatters. Maybe not as many, but frankly I’m still amazed it’s only 5%, with the stock still hovering above $1 one would think the sky ought to be falling. Yet according to Rochester’s Democrat and Chronicle they’re still going ahead with their new headquarters building, so things can’t look that bad…
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