(AP) -- Dell Inc., the world's second-largest computer maker, said Wednesday it is laying off workers around the world but would not say how many or where.
The company would confirm only that some of the employees are based at an assembly plant in North Carolina's Forsyth County and at two facilities in Tennessee.
About a year ago, Dell said it planned to cut $3 billion from its annual expenses, in part by laying off 8,800 people, or 10 percent of its 88,200-member work force at the time. As of Jan. 30, Dell indicated it had gone beyond that goal and lowered head count by 9,300.
Dell bumped up its savings goal to $4 billion in February and indicated the additional cuts would come from both layoffs and supply-chain improvements.
Dell was already struggling with ever-slimmer margins as PC prices dropped, but the economic crisis has added to its troubles as both consumers and businesses are postponing computer purchases.
The Round Rock, Texas-based company has begun shifting work from its own factories to less-expensive contract manufacturers and has said it is reviewing all plants and operations. The company has not publicized a new target number for layoffs or discussed plant closures.
Dell opened the North Carolina factory in 2005, after state and local officials promised economic incentives worth more than $300 million. The company planned to invest $100 million and create 1,500 jobs.
Dell spokesman Jess Blackburn would not say how many of the North Carolina workers would lose their jobs Wednesday.
In Tennessee, some of the 3,000 people employed in two Dell facilities were also laid off Wednesday, but company spokesman David Frink declined to say how many. The PC maker operates a technical support call center, sales operations and a distribution center for the eastern U.S. in Nashville and a desktop computer manufacturing plant in the nearby suburb of Lebanon.
Frink said the employees were offered "competitive" severance packages.
Neither spokesman would say where other layoffs were taking place or what percentage of Dell's overall work force they represent.
Shares of Dell gained 22 cents, or 2.5 percent, to close at $8.98. Hewlett-Packard Co., the No. 1 computer maker, rose $1.57, 5.8 percent, to $28.61.
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