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IAC Swings to Loss

Updated from 8:12 a.m.

IAC/InterActiveCorp (IACI) swung to a fourth-quarter loss on the usual ration of special items. Excluding them, the Internet commerce giant came in well ahead of Wall Street forecasts.

IAC lost $46 million, or 7 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with earnings of $153 million, or 20 cents a share, last year. Sales jumped 9% from a year ago to $1.72 billion.

In the most recent quarter, IAC recorded a $185 million impairment charge related to goodwill at its Teleservices division and a $33 million impairment charge related to intangibles at TV Travel Shop. Together, the items cut aftertax income by 28 cents a share.

IAC said adjusted net income rose 10% from last year to $250 million, or 33 cents a share. On that basis, analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call had been forecasting earnings of 27 cents a share on sales of $1.71 billion.

Shares fell 58 cents to $23.42 early Wednesday.

Among its major segments, revenue rose 11% on a comparable basis from last year to $496.6 million at travel, while it rose 9% to $703.3 million in the quarter at electronic retailing. Ticketing revenue was $188.9 million in the latest quarter, up 3% from a year ago.

IAC said operating income before amortization at its travel division rose 3% from a year ago to $154.2 million, while it rose 34% to $88.5 million at electronic retailing. At ticketing, OIBA rose 11% from a year ago to $38.3 million.

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