DEFINITION of 'Layoff'

1. When a company eliminates jobs regardless of how good the employees' performance.

2. A risk reduction, made by investment bankers, that minimizes the potential downside associated with a commitment to purchase and sell a stock issue unsubscribed by stockholders holding rights.

BREAKING DOWN 'Layoff'

1. This is usually because the company is facing financial difficulties.

2. This is a method whereby an investment banking firm, who has committed to buying up all the unsubscribed shares during a rights offering, will reduce the time risk involved due to the difference between entering into the contract and selling the shares. In other words, they are hedging against any losses due to time.

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