Cisco’s Profit Drops 36 Percent

Cisco Systems Inc.’s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings fell 36 percent, though the decline wasn’t quite as steep excluding significant charges and severance costs from restructuring, as the networking giant’s weaker margin offset a modest revenue increase.

The company, which has posted three straight quarters of lower profit on a long margin slide, has been broadly restructuring into what Chairman and Chief Executive John Chambers has called a “leaner and more focused” operation. That included plans announced last month to lay off 9 percent of its work force, as well as a review of its product portfolio for places to cut back. The changes build on similar strokes earlier this year, such as an internal reorganization in May to simplify structure and the sale of the Flip video camera in April.

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