NEW YORK -- The deteriorating economic outlook in the domestic textile industry has lead Guilford Mills Corp. to shutter the last of its U.S. apparel fabrics manufacturing operations. It will continue to produce apparel fabrics in Mexico.

The company revealed this in a 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday.

Guilford has steadily upped the pace of its job cuts and mill closings over the past two years, most recently moving on Sept. 10 to close a knitting plant in Cobleskill, N.Y. that employed 500. That cut had left the firm with two U.S. apparel-fabrics plants, in Cobleskill and in Greensboro, N.C., where it is based.

But the slowdown in the U.S. economy since then prompted the company to close those operations, as well. The company's total head count reduction last year came to 1,725.

"As conditions worsened, the company expanded and accelerated its apparel realignment plan in fiscal 2001," which ended in October, the filing said. "By the end of fiscal 2001, the company had closed or committed to close all of its domestic apparel dyeing and finishing facilities."

Guilford projected that its fiscal 2002 apparel fabrics revenues would drop to about $80 million, compared to their peak of $550 million in 1997. Company officials did not return phone calls Tuesday evening.

Guilford has apparel fabrics operations in Mexico City and Altamira, Mexico.

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