McDonald’s Layoffs; ZTE Back In Business; Amazon Lands EPL Rights

The Water Coolest

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As part of an initiative to cut costs by more than $500M, or the equivalent of 250M Dollar Menu McGriddles, McDonald’s announced plans to cut layers of management. The Golden Arches’ leadership is keeping headcount reduction numbers closer to the chest than the next location to feature the McRib.

A US turnaround strategy has had mixed results. All day breakfast and the reinvented dollar menu have helped bolster sales. But other efforts, like a switch to fresh beef in select burgers, may prove to be too little, (60 years) too late.

Cost-saving measures include self-service kiosks that have proven effective at encouraging slovenly middle Americans to “want fries with that” and spend more per order. It remains to be seen if these efforts can save McDonald’s from the same fate as the McFlurry machines.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Kids these days will never know the struggle of having to get up before 10:30 for McDonald’s breakfast. Our grandchildren will never understand an entire scene in Big Daddy.”



Just when it looked like it was about time for Chinese phone maker ZTE to warm the bus up, Donny Politics gave them a second lease on life. President Trump lifted a ban barring ZTE from doing business with US companies after they were caught conspiring to forgo US embargoes by selling equipment to Iran.

In order to get back into the good graces of the US, ZTE must agree to change its board and management within 30 days, as well as pay a $1B dollar fine while putting another $400M in escrow. If they’re caught breaking the rules again? That $400M goes directly into Uncle Sam’s pocket and ZTE gets their number blocked again.

The ban itself won’t be lifted until ZTE pays the fines above, but it’s expected to be completed before President Trump meets with North Korea next week.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “On the one hand we’re taking steps to prevent a global trade war, on the other we’ve potentially opened our doors to large-scale corporate espionage. You win some, you lose some.”



Amazon has won the right to stream twenty English Premier League matches this upcoming season.

While Amazon won’t be airing any major matches, like The Manchester Derby, they will have exclusive rights to streaming the EPL matches on Boxing Day. You know, the day when British imperialist elites give “the help” their empty boxes and food scraps. Or something like that.

The disappointing part for red, white, and blue-blooded Americans is that this three-year deal is exclusive to Britain. But on the plus side, the land of the free and the home of the brave can still watch Thursday night (real) football on Amazon Prime. And isn’t that what the founding father would’ve wanted?

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Alexa, teach ignorant American sports fans what pitch and relegation mean.”




  • Warren Buffet, Jamie Dimon, and Jeff Bezos’ claim that they have chosen a CEO to lead their combined healthcare venture. Geisinger CEO David Feinberg will complete the Mount Rushmore of corporate titans. For the record, Feinberg is Warren G. Harding.
  • Unphased by United States Congress and EU’s Parliament, Facebook continues to do what Facebook does best: kick ass and breach privacy. The latest indiscretion? The ‘book switched as many as 14M accounts privacy settings to “Public.”
  • Deutsche Bank is allegedly in talks with shareholders about a possible sale to Commerzbank, a German competitor.
  • When they aren’t busy fearlessly leading two of the most well-respected companies in the world, Warren Buffett and Jamie Dimon enjoy telling other people how to do their job. The dynamic duo is asking companies to end quarterly earnings forecasts, claiming the practice stifles long-term investment. We’re the two best friends that anyone could ever have.
  • Starbucks is increasing prices this week by 10 to 20 cents on all sizes of brewed coffee. Just consider it a douchebag tax.
  • US indices were mixed yesterday:
    • DOW: +0.38%
    • S&P 500: -0.07%
    • NASDAQ: -0.70%


The Water Coolest is a daily business newsletter consisting of business news, financial advice, and unfiltered commentary. Delivered fresh in your inbox every morning so you're ready to snap necks and cash checks. Written by Tyler Morrin, AJ Glagolev, Nick Ellis, and Ian Barto.