Pfizer got tax break but didn't deliver jobs

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As Pfizer held its big conference call with analysts this morning, the New York Daily News was reporting on the company's job cuts and plant closure in Manhattan and Brooklyn. At issue: a $10 million tax-break package the drug maker got in return for creating new jobs in New York. Pfizer was supposed to be on the hook for boosting employment to 8,659 from 5,735.

In 2004, the first year of the agreement, Pfizer was supposed to create 1,000 jobs. Tally: 199. And that was the net after Pfizer moved 1,000 jobs in from out of state and then cut other workers. Of course we all know that more job cuts have followed. The company is shutting down its historic Brooklyn plant; by the time the last workers there are laid off, the company may even have fewer employees than when the tax deal began.

Pfizer did notify the city last September that it wouldn't be meeting its job-growth goals. The city suspended the tax deal. But too late--Pfizer had already received almost all the tax breaks.

Meanwhile, about that conference call: As expected, the company didn't reveal any earth-shatteringly new strategies. It's eyeing global markets for growth and concentrating on cutting more costs via outsourced manufacturing and real estate cutbacks. It will also continue leaning hard on its fastest-growing meds such as Geodon and Lyrica. We'll have more tomorrow.

- see Pfizer's release
- read the story in the Daily News
- check out the Pharmalot item

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