There have been more than 140,000 job losses so far this year, according to a report from outplacement consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas released Friday; nearly two-thirds of the cuts have happened since July. There were 55,818 cuts in electronics, 50,303 in computer, and 34,301 in telecommunication. Tech job cuts are now averaging 22,358 per month; they averaged 8,498 in the first half. Challenger, Gray & Christmas estimates that the total at the end of the year will be 180,000, the highest yearly losses since 2003, when 228,000 jobs were cut. We’re – so far – nowhere near the levels of 2001 (695,581) and 2002 (468,161).

Jobs cuts were 7,345 in Q1, 33,644 in Q2 69,654 in Q3, and 19,779 in the current quarter (up to October 31). Q3 losses were the highest since the fourth quarter of 2003, which saw 82,000 job cuts.

“In addition to Sun Microsystems’ announcement, Applied Materials and National Semiconductor have announced job cuts in November. By the end of the year, we may also see cuts from Cisco Systems, Qualcomm and Nokia, all of whom are reporting falling sales amid the weakening economy,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

Read the pdf here.

By Mark Alvarez