When Companies Opt for Pay Cuts Instead of Layoffs

Firms are reducing salaries to preserve jobs. But that trade-off quickly gets complicated


In early February, Casino Mogul Steve Wynn took a stand on layoffs. The gaming industry is flailing — Nevada regulators recently formed a task force on bankruptcies — but when it came to cutting costs by cutting employees, Wynn wouldn't hear of it.

Instead, Wynn announced that everyone at his company's two Las Vegas properties, Wynn and Encore, would take a pay cut. Salaried workers earning $150,000 or more would see a 15% drop in their paychecks; those making less would take a 10% hit. Hourly employees would go from a 40-hour to a 32-hour week. The idea: save millions of...

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