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What: Shares of online recruitment firm Monster Worldwide (NYSE: MWW ) plunged 18% on Thursday after the company's quarterly results and outlook missed Wall Street expectations.
So what: Another quarter of weaker-than-expected growth -- fourth-quarter revenue came it at just $250 million versus the average estimate of $259 million -- prompted management to cut about 400 jobs, or 7% of its workforce, to help offset the slowdown. The stock has been pummeled over the past year amid a weak global job market, and Monster's own restructuring moves suggest that a turnaround isn't coming anytime soon.
Now what: Looking ahead, Monster expects a first-quarter revenue drop of 3% to 7% and EPS in the range of breakeven to $0.04, which is also well below the consensus of $0.09. "Our focus in 2012 will be to further leverage our product leadership and global platform, and increase customer adoption," said CEO Sal Iannuzzi. Unfortunately, when you couple the gloomy global outlook with Monster's historically low returns on equity, those initiatives just aren't enough to make Monster a buy.
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