Saturday, September 13, 2008

Alaska Airlines to cut up to 1,000 jobs

NEW YORK, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Alaska Airlines said on Friday it will reduce its work force by up to 10 percent and cut flights due to high oil prices, a softening economy and increased competition.

Alaska said it will cut its capacity by 8 percent compared to a year ago, effective Nov. 9.

Alaska previously announced that 80 management jobs would be cut and on Friday said 850 to 1,000 "operational" positions will also be eliminated, including pilots, attendants, technicians and customer service staff.

"We are changing our schedule to make sure we're flying the right routes with the right frequency and right aircraft," said Bill Ayer, CEO of Alaska Air Group Inc (ALK.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), parent of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air.

"Regrettably, a reduced schedule means we need fewer employees," added Ayer.

Alaska said Horizon Air expects to reduce capacity in the fourth quarter by about 20 percent compared to the same period last year.

Amid high fuel prices and a slowing economy, major U.S. airlines have been cutting routes, capacity and jobs, raising fares and introducing fees for checked bags and other services.

Alaska Air Group shares were trading down about 3 percent at $23.05 on Friday.

(Reporting by Mark McSherry; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

source: Alaska Airlines to cut up to 1000 jobs
Reuters - 56 minutes ago