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Strong Growth In Wireless And U-verse Drives Revenue And Adjusted Earnings Per Share Growth In AT&T’s Fourth-Quarter Results

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) today reported fourth-quarter results highlighted by strong wireless revenue growth, record smartphone sales, the highest postpaid net adds in three years and accelerating consumer wireline revenue growth thanks to U-verse services.

“We had an excellent 2012,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and chief executive officer. “We grew revenues, increased adjusted earnings per share by 8.5 percent and generated cash from operations at record levels. We used this cash to invest aggressively in the future of our business and returned $23 billion to shareowners through dividends and share repurchases.

“Looking ahead, our key growth platforms — mobile data, U-verse and strategic business services — all have good momentum with a lot of headroom,” Stephenson said. “We’re off to a strong start executing Project VIP, our plan to expand our high-growth platforms to millions more customers, and our 4G LTE network deployment is ahead of schedule, delivering outstanding performance.”

Fourth-Quarter Financial Results

For the quarter ended December 31, 2012, AT&T's consolidated revenues totaled $32.6 billion, up 0.2 percent versus the year-earlier quarter and up an even stronger 2.8 percent when excluding revenues primarily from the divested Advertising Solutions business unit as well as the impact of Superstorm Sandy.

Compared with results for the fourth quarter of 2011, operating expenses were $38.5 billion versus $41.5 billion; operating loss was $6.0 billion, compared to a loss of $9.0 billion; and AT&T’s operating income margin was (18.3) percent, compared to (27.7) percent. Excluding previously noted adjustments, operating expenses were $28.4 billion, compared to an adjusted $27.5 billion in the year-ago quarter, up 3.3 percent; operating income was $4.2 billion, flat versus a year ago; and operating income margin was 12.9 percent.

Fourth-quarter 2012 net income attributable to AT&T totaled $(3.9) billion, or $(0.68) per diluted share, compared to $(6.7) billion, or $(1.12) per diluted share, in the year-earlier quarter. Excluding adjustments of $(1.10) from the non-cash actuarial loss on benefit plans, $(0.02) from storm impacts and adjusted for Advertising Solutions, earnings per share was up 10 percent, $0.44 compared to an adjusted $0.40 in the year-ago quarter.

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