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Boeing to Cut at Least 4,500 Jobs

Boeing will eliminate about 4,000 jobs in its commercial airplanes division by the middle of this year and another roughly 550 jobs in a division that conducts flight and lab tests, company spokespeople told Reuters.

The planemaker will reduce 1,600 positions in the commercial airplanes division through voluntary layoffs, while the rest of the cuts are expected to be completed by leaving open positions unfilled, spokesman Doug Alder said.

The Boeing logo is seen at their headquarters in Chicago
The Boeing logo is seen at their headquarters in Chicago, April 24, 2013. REUTERS/Jim Young

"While there is no employment reduction target, the more we can control costs as a whole the less impact there will be to employment," Alder said.

The job cuts, which will include hundreds at executive and managerial positions, will not be done through involuntary layoffs, Alder said.

Boeing will also cut about 10 percent of the approximately 5,700 jobs in its test and evaluation division, which conducts flight and lab tests, spokeswoman Sandra Angers told Reuters.

The company had a total of 161,400 employees as of December 31.

Reuters reported last month that Boeing was considering offering voluntary layoffs to its professional engineers and technical workers. In February, Ray Conner, chief executive of Boeing's airplane business, warned employees that job cuts were necessary to "win in the market, fund our growth and operate as a healthy business."

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