Updated at 9:40 a.m. EST
AT&T Corporation (t) – Get a free report announced better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings with its short-term outlook muted on Wednesday, adding that it plans to pay down debt as a priority after meeting its dividend payments.
AT&T said adjusted earnings for the three months ended December were pegged at 61 cents per share, up 9% year over year and just ahead of the Street consensus forecast of 57 cents per share.
AT&T said that a $25 billion loss charge, related to soaring interest rates last year, pushed the group into an operating loss of $23.1 billion.
Revenue, the company said, rose 0.65% year over year to $31.3 billion, essentially matching Street’s forecast, while the group’s standalone mobile revenue was pegged at $21.5 billion, up 1.7 percent from last year. with services revenue up 5.2% to $15.4 billion..
About 656,000 postpaid wireless subscribers were added during the quarter, the company said, just ahead of the consensus forecast of about 645,000, while overall revenue The figures reflect the separation of its media properties into Warner Bros. Discovery (white blood cells) – Get a free report last year.
Looking at the current year, AT&T says it sees adjusted earnings between $2.35 and $2.45 per share, compared with Street’s forecast of $2.56, with revenue growth. wireless service was “4% or higher”, with broadband revenue up 5%. Or more.
“We are committed to connecting people to greater possibilities, and our results demonstrate that our customers are responding to this,” said CEO John Stankey. “Our consistent go-to-market strategy and the simplicity of our services fueled strong, high-quality fiber and wireless customers that continued to grow in the fourth quarter. In 10 Last quarter, we demonstrated sustained momentum in growing customer relationships, with 7.5 million postpaid phone network additions and 2.9 million AT&T fiber network additions. “
“We met or surpassed all of our profit targets for the year while investing at record levels to bring the benefits of fiber and 5G technologies to more people,” he added. “As we enter 2023, I am confident in our business trajectory and our team’s ability to deliver profitable and sustainable growth for our shareholders.”
AT&T stock marked 4.75% higher in early trading Wednesday after it posted earnings that changed hands at $20.07 per share, a seven-month high that sent the stock into the market. positive areas in the past year.
The group’s net debt is pegged at $132.2 billion, AT&T said, while free cash flow in 2022 is $14.1 billion and $4.1 billion — after dividend — in the fourth quarter, showing a payout ratio of 33%.