Updated from 12:16 a.m. EDT

Yahoo! ( YHOO) is preparing a significant round of job cuts, the first cuts since new CEO Carol Bartz joined the Internet company in January, published reports say.

The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the matter, said the cuts are likely to affect several hundred employees companywide on top of the 2,400 jobs cut last year. The move could be announced next week when Yahoo! reports its first-quarter earnings, which are expected to be lackluster.

The Associated Press confirmed news of the job cuts, citing a person familiar with the plan. The news of the layoffs was first published on the New York Times' Web site late Tuesday.

Sunnyvale, California-based Yahoo! is trying to reverse three years of declining profits and has imposed other rounds of layoffs, including 1,500 workers in December. Yahoo! has about 13,700 employees now.

Management had warned another purge could come, depending on the length and severity of the recession.

Yahoo!, which is heavily exposed to display advertising, has been harder hit by customers curtailing their ad spending than other Internet companies, such as Google ( GOOG), the Journal notes.

Yahoo hired technology veteran Bartz as its CEO to steer a turnaround. The blunt-talking Bartz has spent much of her tenure trying to understand Yahoo!'s strengths and weaknesses while promising to throw out the dead wood. She already has reorganized Yahoo's management team.

Copyright 2008 TheStreet.com Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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