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Caterpillar closing 5 plants, cutting 670 jobs

Caterpillar says it plans to close five plants and trim about 670 jobs in Illinois and several other states, in the latest phase of a larger cost-cutting campaign announced last year.

The mining and construction equipment company will cut about 230 jobs for office and production workers at a major manufacturing campus in East Peoria, Ill., where Caterpillar says it’s consolidating some manufacturing and transferring some work to outside contractors. Another 120 employees there will be placed on indefinite layoff.

Caterpillar said other consolidation efforts will add some jobs at a facility in Pontiac, Ill., while cutting more positions in Thomasville, Ga.; Santa Fe, N.M.; Prentice, Wis., and other sites.

In Prentice, Caterpillar reported Friday that it will shut down its forest products plant. Caterpillar says it will move the work done by 220 employees in Prentice facilities to Georgia and Texas by the end of the year.

The company also says it’s negotiating with a possible buyer for the Prentice plant, but provided no other details.

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