Lockheed space unit to cut about 1,200 jobs

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Lockheed Martin Corp's <LMT.N> space systems unit said on Tuesday it would cut 1,200 workers, or about 7.5 percent of the division's total workforce, by year's end to reduce costs and improve its competitive standing.

The company said operations across the United States would be affected by the job cuts, with the largest impact seen in Sunnyvale, California; the Delaware Valley region of Pennsylvania; and Denver, where several major programs are moving out of development.

Lockheed said some salaried workers would be offered voluntary layoffs to minimize the number of involuntary layoffs that will occur. Middle management at the space systems business will likely be reduced by 25 percent with the moves, the company added.

The space division employs about 16,000 U.S. workers. Lockheed overall has about 126,000 workers worldwide.

(Reporting by Karen Jacobs, editing by Gerald E. McCormick)