updated 3/2/2004 1:09:40 PM ET 2004-03-02T18:09:40

Gateway Inc. Chief Financial Officer Roderick Sherwood says he expects the computer and electronics maker to cut more than 2,000 jobs in the next few months.

Sherwood told a presentation Monday at the Morgan Stanley Semiconductor & Systems Conference that once the merger with eMachines Inc. is complete, the headcount is projected to be in the mid-5,000 range, down from the 7,400 employees Gateway had at year's end.

The conference was broadcast over the Internet.

Sherwood said the Federal Trade Commission's 30-day waiting period ends March 8, and if Gateway doesn't get any additional questions, he expects the merger to close that day or the day after.

In late January, Gateway announced plans to acquire eMachines for about $235 million in cash and stock.

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