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Huawei lays off two thirds of its US research division

The US blacklisting prevents it from doing much (if any) business.
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Reuters/Jane Lanhee Lee

The rumors of Huawei laying off a large chunk of its US staff have come to pass. The company is cutting over 600 of the 850 jobs at its Futurewei Technologies research wing in the country in response to the "curtailment of business operations" by the US government's trade blacklisting. Simply put, the researchers can't do their jobs now that it's illegal for Futurewei to transfer much of its work to its parent company.

An employee still employed at Futurewei told Reuters that work ground to a halt after the ban took effect.

This still leaves roughly 1,200 Huawei employees in the US, although most of them are involved in customer support, public affairs and the supply chain. Moreover, the company's American ranks have been shrinking ever since AT&T backed out of a phone deal due to US government pressure. The team is a shell of its former self, for better or for worse, and it's unlikely to bounce back unless talk of a partial reprieve on trade gives Huawei a break.

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