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ABC Cuts 400 Jobs

Disney is taking out 400 jobs from the ABC TV division, several published reports indicate. The Burbank, Calif. media giant said it would ax 200 people from its payroll, and leaving another 200 positions unfilled. The cuts will be made across the ABC Network, ABC News, Disney Channel, ABC Family and SoapNet. Disney-owned ESPN earlier this week announced the elimination of 200 jobs and a salary freeze for senior executives. The New division lost 37 heads yesterday. About 600 executives in the theme-park division were offered buyouts last week, The Los Angeles Timesreports.

Another move made last week combined ABC Entertainment and ABC Studios into a single unit. At the time, Disney reps said no job cuts would result from the consolidation.

Disney employs around 7,000 people total. The company culled more than $4.4 billion in net income from nearly $38 billion in revenues for fiscal 2008. Income was down 5 percent from 2007. CEO Robert Iger was nonetheless rewarded $30.6 million for the year, up 11 percent from ’07, the Times points out.

The street gave Disney (NYSE: DIS) no props for cutting jobs. Shares fell from $21.31 to $20.76 by mid-day trading. First-quarter earnings will be announced Feb. 3.