Agilent takes a battering

'Worst ever market conditions', alleges CEO...

'Worst ever market conditions', alleges CEO...

Agilent Technologies, the former test and measurement division of HP, felt the full force of the slump in semiconductor sales when it recorded heavy quarterly losses and announced job cuts yesterday. Agilent CEO Ned Barnholt described conditions as "by far the worst industry downturn I've seen in my 34 years with the company". Agilent is heavily dependent on orders from the communications equipment and semiconductor industries. Both had been forced to cut down on orders and the knock-on affect was now being felt by Agilent. The firm recorded a net loss of $219m for its third quarter compared to a profit of $155m last year. Barnholt said he was looking to cut 4,000 jobs.