Google is reportedly set to shed a "significant" number of the 10,000 contract workers it uses, but says permanent positions are not under threat.
Jane Penner, spokeswoman for Google, would not specify how many contract workers were to be axed, nor detail when the cuts would be made.
She told The Wall Street Journal: "We have been thinking for some time, before the acute phase of the economic crisis, about significantly reducing the number of contract workers."
Google had about 10,000 contractors at the end of the third quarter.
Sergey Brin, the co-founder of Google, indicated last month that cutbacks could be expected after revealing that his company's contractor-related expenses were "really high".
A spokesman for Google, said: "We have been thinking for some time, before the acute phase of the economic crisis, about significantly reducing the number of contract workers."
The internet giant said it had no plans to cut any of its permanent employees, which number 20,123.
Google's share price has been trading at a three-year low in recent weeks and now sits at £282.05, which is down from a high of $724.80 in November last year.
The cuts in contract staff follows an announcement in April that Google was to axe 300 jobs at its online advertising unit DoubleClick. The lay-offs made up about a quarter of DoubleClick's 1,200-strong workforce in the US.
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