A year after the outgoing secretary of the treasury top ticked the economy and ushered in QE 2 with his abysmal NYT op-ed "Welcome to the Recovery" it is only appropriate that we get news that Cisco is preparing to fire 10,000, or 14% of its entire workforce, over and above the number of people that the company said was going to be let go in May. "The cuts include as many as 7,000 jobs that would be eliminated by the end of August, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t final. Cisco, based in San Jose, California, is also providing early-retirement packages to about 3,000 workers who took buyouts, the people said. Cisco Chief Executive Officer John Chambers is slashing jobs and exiting less-profitable businesses as competitors such as Juniper Networks Inc. (JNPR) and Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) take market share in Cisco’s main businesses with lower-priced, simpler products. Sales of Cisco’s switches and routers, which made up more than half of revenue last year, will continue to slip, said Brian Marshall, an analyst at Gleacher & Co." All in the name of the bottom line: "Eliminating jobs will help Cisco wring $1 billion in expenses in fiscal 2012, the company said in May. Cisco expects costs of $500 million to $1.1 billion in the fiscal fourth quarter as a result of the voluntary early retirement program, it said in a quarterly filing."
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“We will provide additional detail on the cost reductions, including layoffs, on our next earnings call,” Karen Tillman, a spokeswoman for Cisco, said in reference to an earnings call scheduled for early August. She declined to discuss job cut figures.
The voluntary retirement packages included one year’s pay and medical benefits, and were offered to about 5,800 employees, two people said.
“The revenue trajectory hasn’t been where it should be,” Marshall, who has a “neutral” rating on the stock with a target price of $17, said in an interview. “The company is not staffed on an appropriate level. They simply have too many employees.”
Cisco said in May that it shuttered the Flip video-camera unit and cut 550 jobs. The company may eliminate more positions in the consumer-product unit, which makes Linksys home- networking equipment, Marshall said. Some investors have said the company should exit consumer products entirely to focus on traditional enterprise offerings such as routers and switches. Cisco’s equipment is used by corporate networks and telephone and Internet service providers to direct Web traffic.
Trimming about 5,000 jobs would reduce operating expenses by about $1 billion annually and boost 2012 earnings by about 8 percent, Marshall said.
We expect many other companies to follow suit in order to eliminate even more "overhead", or as it is better known, fat. And while S&P500 EPS may get a modest boost out of this latest upcoming firing wave, it means that the next leg down in payrolls is imminent.