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CHICAGO, Feb 28 (Reuters) - Deere & Co. on Friday announced indefinite layoffs for 42 employees in Waterloo, Iowa as part of the company's effort to become a more efficient organization.
The Moline, Illinois-based company is trying to cut costs to make itself more profitable. It is aiming to boost operating profit margin to 15% by 2022 from 12.5% projected for this year.
The steps are part of a broader trend in the U.S. manufacturing sector which is battling a downturn.
Deere's shares were last trading down 2.8% at $155.47 in afternoon trade on Friday.
Since late last year, the world's largest farm equipment maker has, thus far, announced over 460 layoffs in the United States.
Nearly three-fourths of those cuts have taken place at its facilities in Iowa, which could be a crucial state in this year's presidential election. In the 2018 mid-term elections, two Republicans lost their re-election bids to the U.S. House of Representatives, giving Democrats a majority of the four congressional districts.
The company is also carrying out a voluntary separation program for its salaried employees.
The layoffs at Waterloo Works, which manufactures Deere's largest tractors, would come into effect on May 4. (Reporting by Rajesh Kumar Singh, Editing by Franklin Paul and Diane Craft)