Musk: Tesla will lay off 3.5% of the total workforce.

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Elon Musk has tried to clarify how many Tesla employees will lose their jobs, following the launch of a lawsuit by former employees who claim that the car manufacturer violated US labor laws, according to CNBC.

Speaking at an event hosted by Bloomberg on Tuesday, Musk said that Tesla will reduce its workforce by 10% in the next three months, while at the same time increasing the number of employees by the hour.

A report earlier this month from Reuters showed that Musk wanted to cut 10% of jobs, citing an internal email written by the CEO of Tesla. In the note, Musk said he had a “very bad feeling” about the economy.

But in a subsequent email to Tesla staff, obtained by CNBC, Musk clarified that the company will reduce its number of employees by 10% and increase its staff by the hour.

Musk said Tuesday that this means that Tesla’s layoff announcement will affect about 3.5% of the total workforce. Employees make up about two-thirds of Tesla employees, he added.

“In a year’s time, I think our number of employees will be higher, both in terms of employees and, obviously, in terms of hours,” Musk said.

On Sunday, two former Tesla employees filed a lawsuit against the company, accusing it of violating US federal laws on “mass layoffs.”

Under the Workers ‘Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, employers are required to give 60 days’ notice of a mass layoff or factory closure.

Musk, the richest man in the world, denied the importance of the trial on Tuesday, saying he was “wrong”.

“It’s a small process with minor consequences,” he said. “Anything related to Tesla gets headlines, whether it’s a bike accident or something much worse.”

Musk’s treatment of workers has been under scrutiny lately. He recently told Tesla employees that he should come to the office at least 40 hours a week or leave the company.

While other tech bosses – including Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, whom Musk is trying to buy – have accepted the post-Covid impulse to work remotely, Musk disagrees. He said that people who want to work remotely “should pretend to work elsewhere”.