In Rome, a woman walks by a closed-down outlet store Tuesday. Italy’s economy shrank 0.2 percent in the second quarter after contracting 0.1 percent in the previous three months. (Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg News)
SeaWorld stock dives during controversy

SeaWorld Entertainment shares lost more than a third of their value after the theme-park operator slashed forecasts amid a controversy over its killer whale shows that has hurt attendance.

The shares fell 33 percent after the company also reported lower-than-expected profit and revenue for the second quarter ended June 30.

Protests against orca shows at SeaWorld’s amusement parks intensified after a 2013 film, “Blackfish,” documented the killing of a trainer at the company’s Orlando park in 2010 by the whales. A bill has been introduced in California proposing a ban on using killer whales in entertainment shows at amusement parks.

“The Company believes attendance in the quarter was impacted by demand pressures related to recent media attention surrounding proposed legislation in the state of California,” SeaWorld officials said in a statement Wednesday.

SeaWorld said it expects revenue to decline 6 to 7 percent this year. In the second quarter, sales fell 1.5 percent, to $405.2 million. Net income was $37.3 million. The company’s stock, which closed at $18.90, was the top percentage loser on the New York Stock Exchange.

— Reuters

Cisco to lay off 6,000 in a restructuring

Cisco said Wednesday that it will lay off about 6,000 workers, or 8 percent of its workforce, as part of a restructuring.

The company, which makes routers, switches and software, said the layoffs will affect workers in operations around the world. Cisco had about 75,000 employees at the end of July. Including the latest round, Cisco has eliminated more than 18,000 jobs in the past three years.

The announcement was made during a conference call about Cisco’s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings. The San Jose-based company reported a 1 percent decline in profit, to $2.25 billion, as revenue dipped to $12.36 billion from $12.42 billion. Its adjusted earnings for the three months ended July 26, its fourth quarter, came to 55 cents per share, 2 cents more than analysts expected, according to Zacks Investment Research.

During the conference call, Chief Financial Officer Frank Calderoni said the company estimates pretax charges of up to $700 million, with about $250 million to $350 million recorded in the current quarter, for the restructuring.

— Associated Press

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