If the recent rash of publishers downsizing and cutting staff members wasn't already worrisome, the rumored upcoming layoffs at Microsoft are downright frightening.

According to Bloomberg, Microsoft is going to be hit with the largest workforce reduction the company has seen in nearly half a decade. Early reports suggest that the restructuring at Microsoft could see upwards of 6,000 jobs cut, which would surpass the 5,800 jobs Microsoft eliminated back in 2009. At the time, that was just around five percent of Microsoft's total workforce.

As per the report, a majority of the cutbacks would come into play where Microsoft's Windows Phone and Nokia divisions overlapped. Acquired last September, Nokia's mobile partnership with Microsoft has been a big part of the Windows Phone line-up. Part of that deal however was an agreement to cut $600 million in annual costs in the 18 month period following the acquisition. The quickest way to generate that kind of savings would be to eliminate any overlap with existing positions within Microsoft. However, that's not the only area in which Microsoft is expected to make some sacrifices. There are supposedly going to be some cuts in the marketing departments for the global Xbox team, as well as reductions in the engineering, testing and development areas.

Bloomberg stated that as of June 5, Microsoft employed more than 127,000 people. A five percent cutback would result in more than 6,000 people without jobs. That lines up with the rumored figure, as well as falling in line with the hints the number would surpass the massive 2009 number. That said, none of this is confirmed just yet. Microsoft hasn't publicly offered any comment on the matter, though with its fiscal earnings report for the last quarter due to come on July 22, the bad news is clearly looming just around the corner.

Microsoft is hardly the first company to see layoffs this year, and likely won't be the last to be hit with cutbacks. It's not even the first time Microsoft has had layoffs in 2014. Hopefully the measures won't be as drastic as have been reported, and many more people will actually be able to keep their jobs rather than lose them.

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