dcblogs writes "IBM is offering employees who are nearing retirement — and may be worried about a layoff — a one-time voluntary program that would ensure their employment through Dec. 31, 2013. The program, described in a letter addressed to IBM managers, 'offers participants 70% of their pay for working 60% of their schedule.' Participating employees would receive 'the same benefits they do today, most at a full-time level, including health benefits and 401(k) Plus Plan automatic company contributions.' In 2006, IBM employed about 127,000 in U.S. The Alliance@IBM, a CWA local, now estimates the U.S. workforce at around 95,000. How far IBM will go in cutting is up for debate, including one radical estimate."