Printer maker Lexmark is to cut 900 jobs in Kentucky and relocate its laser-printer manufacturing operations to Mexico and China.

The company said the restructuring would save approximately $100 million by 2002.

Savings Lexmark needs to make these savings in order to remain competitive in the printer business, the company said. The company has a workforce of 10,900 people.

The cost-cutting moves come as the laser and ink-jet printer maker released its third-quarter earnings, saying that its net income for the period ending September 30 fell 14 per cent to 66.1 million, or 50 cents a share, compared with $76.5 million, or 56 cents a share a year ago.

Profit After a profit warning by the company in September, analysts at First Call/Thomson Financial downgraded the company's expected earnings from 60 cents a share to 47 cents. Lexmark said its lower-than-expected earnings were the result of slow ink-jet cartridge sales and weakness in European currencies.

Revenue for the third quarter was up 10 per cent to $927 million from $845 million in the third quarter of last year. The company said that without the negative impact of foreign currency exchange, revenue would have been up 15 per cent. Lexmark said it expects its fourth-quarter earnings to grow 10 per cent to 15 per cent over the same period last year.