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2.7%  Q1 GDP    4.57%  avg. 30-year mortgage     9.5%  Unemployment

Goodbye, Moto: 3,000 Layoffs at Motorola

Struggling cellphone maker Motorola today phoned in a heap of bad news:

- It will cut 3,000 jobs, a move that follows a 9,000-job cut earlier this year.

- It will miss its fourth-quarter earnings estimate by at least 3 cents per share.

- It will delay the spin-off of its money-losing cellphone unit until next year.

Which means that, after the spin-off, Motorola won't be a cellphone company anymore. It wants to focus on its more profitable TV set-top boxes, two-way radios and wireless-networking equipment. Phones are the company's only money-losing division.

Revenue from sales of Motorola phones dropped a whopping 31 percent in the past quarter, as the company slipped into fourth place in the global mobile market. (Nokia is No. 1, with 40 percent of the market.)

Although the news comes during a financial crisis, it probably has less to do with the ongoing contraction than with Motorola's particular troubles, which include trying to carve out business in a category dominated by one maker, Nokia.

The company has too long been been focused on "bright, shiny objects,'' Motorola co-chief executive Sanjay Jha said on a conference call today.

-- Frank Ahrens

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By Frank Ahrens  |  October 30, 2008; 2:22 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  
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