Corrections or additions?

This article was prepared for the May 22, 2002 edition of

U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between the Lines

It’s hard to keep your head, reporting on technology

companies, when all around you technology workers are getting laid

off. Still three dozen companies, hoping to be included in this issue,

gave optimistic reports about themselves. We had room to summarize

only half the submissions, and we focused on pharmaceutical service

companies. Eventually the others will find their way into print, including

some in a biotech roundup to be printed in the next month or so.

As for those layoffs: U.S. 1 does not report each and every layoff,

just like we don’t report each and every promotion, new product, or

contract. Nor do we slavishly report state and national statistics.

Daily newspapers have that mandate. The Times of Trenton, in fact,

has contributed several illuminating articles on the downturn. Just

last Sunday it reported that a normally successful job fair attracted

less than half the usual number of recruiting booths — 32 companies

were there looking for workers, down from 80 last year.

While U.S. 1 focuses on companies that are still in business and what

they are up to, we also bear our fair share of bad news. This week’s

Fast Lane on page 52 notes the subleasing of the Merrill Lynch space

on Roszel Road, and the latest downsizing at Sarnoff.

And our annual Business Directory does tell a story through the annual

headcounts we attempt to extract from area employers. While staff

sizes are notoriously difficult to determine at some companies (and

counts can change just because a different person is doing the count),

the Business Directory does reveal some discouraging statistics: UPHCAetna

down from 1,750 to 1,100, Sarnoff from 800 to a low of 675 (and now

to 575), and all the fiber optic companies report rounds of layoffs.

Even Bloomberg, which has been a poster child for growth in the Princeton

area, reported fewer people working here in 2002 than in 2001, from

1,700 to 1,600.

Nevertheless, one industry that perennially seeks warm bodies is healthcare

(RWJ University Hospitals reported a total staff of 3,000 in 2001

and 3,950 in 2002). Isn’t it the truth: there never seem to be enough

nurses. This year’s U.S. 1 Health and Fitness directory will be published

June 19, and it may be a good source for jobhunters and employers,

as well as for those seeking to get healthy or stay healthy. If you

represent a medical or fitness practice, please respond to our request

for information ASAP. If you have questions call us at 609-452-7000.

Fiction Issue

Some of that summer reading, we hope, will begin this

Memorial Day weekend. More of it will continue on the Fourth of July.

If by the end of July you have exhausted all your summer reads, then

we hope to provide you with some fresh material. Our annual Summer

Fiction issue will be published Wednesday, July 24.

As always, we are hoping to be an outlet for writers (and previously

closeted writers) of poetry and fiction right in our own backyard.

Our deadline for submissions is Friday, June 28. See our notice about

the issue on page 43 of this issue. And if you have a piece of fiction

about a downsizing, feel free to send it our way.

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