Some of Wednesday’s biggest market news actually came on the job front, as AMR Corp.’s (PINK:AAMRQ) American Airlines announced a plan to lay off thousands in an attempt to emerge from bankruptcy, and reports about possible Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) cuts surfaced.
American Airlines said Wednesday that it would cut about 15% of its work force — some 13,000 jobs — in an attempt to save about $1.25 billion a year in labor costs. The company will cut about 4,600 jobs from maintenance alone, and the Transport Workers Union said it expects many of those jobs will be outsourced overseas, a common practice among the nation’s other major airlines.
American Airlines also hopes to save money through a shift in pension benefits and aircraft efficiencies. AAMRQ stock finished Wednesday trading sharply down, losing more than 11% to finish at 60 cents per share.
Also Wednesday, a report from Seattle television affiliate KOMO-TV (via Barron’s) said Microsoft is prepared to make “significant layoffs” in restructuring. Microsoft lost about 7% of its value in 2011, though MSFT shares are off to a hot start in 2012, gaining 15% in a month.
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) stock was down about 8% after a day’s worth of marinating on Tuesday’s gloomy earnings report. The company’s revenues increased but came up well short of estimates, profits dropped by almost 60%, and Amazon laid out a weak forecast for its first-quarter earnings.
- Seagate Technology (NYSE:STX): Up 20.8% ($4.39) to $25.53.
- Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR): Up 13.5% ($7.32) to $61.64.
- Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MPC): Up 9.6% ($3.66) to $41.88.
- Renren (NASDAQ:RENN): Down 9.7% (54 cents) to $5.01.
- Exco Resources (NYSE:XCO): Down 8% (63 cents) to $7.23.
- Arm Holdings (NASDAQ:ARMH): Down 2.9% (83 cents) to $28.05.
Kyle Woodley is the assistant editor of InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Check out recaps from previous trading days here.