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Barnes & Noble announces layoffs

The downturn in the U.S. publishing industry is spilling over into the retail sector. After dismal holiday sales, which dipped by 5.2% in the nine-week run-up to Christmas, the beleaguered U.S. retailer Barnes & Noble has laid off 100 employees at its corporate headquarters in New York “ a 4% reduction in staff. According to The New York Times, CEO Stephen Riggio said in a statement that this was the first time in the company’s history that it had cut jobs.

Elsewhere in the blogosphere, Galleycat is reporting that an unnamed U.S. literary agency is cutting the royalties it pays to agents by 2%. While the company is blaming the move on delayed payments from publishers, some staffers are grumbling that management is simply using the recession to squeeze its employees. From Galleycat:

All this started because the literary agency claimed it needed those extra two percentage points from the royalties to meet its operating expenses” because it accused publishers of taking advantage of the industry’s recent descent into chaos to delay the payment of royalties. But the agent on the inside told us that wasn’t necessarily so: “We haven’t really noticed a slow-down in payments from publishers. At least not any slower than usual.”


January 16th, 2009

12:54 pm

Category: Book news

Tagged with: Economic downturn