Novatel Wireless

(NVTL)

posted a fourth-quarter loss today that beat Wall Street's slightly lowered estimates by 2 cents.

For the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, Novatel reported a loss, excluding the amortization of deferred stock-based compensation, a charge and costs related to preferred stock dividends, of $8.1 million, or 16 cents a share. The company lost $8.9 million, or 33 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Novatel's figures are pro forma, because the company has only been public since Nov. 15. Three analysts surveyed by

First Call/Thomson Financial

expected the company, which is based in San Diego, to lose 18 cents a share.

Novatel, a provider of wireless data communications access products, reported fourth-quarter revenue of $27.7 million, up sharply from $4 million in the same quarter one year ago.

The company said it is "on track" to break even by the end of 2001.