Lamar Advertising ( LAMR) posted a wider first-quarter loss and predicted a slight revenue shortfall in the current period. The company lost $32.4 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with a loss of $16.3 million, or 16 cents a share, in the prior-year period. Before an accounting charge, the company lost $20.6 million, or 20 cents a share, in the latest quarter. Recently, shares of the company were down 6% to $34 in Instinet premarket trading. Revenue was $184.2 million, up from last year's $176.5 million. Operating expenses grew to $181.9 million from $175.4 million last year. Looking to the second quarter, the Baton Rouge, La.-based company expects net revenue to be about $206 million. Sales in the second quarter of 2002 were $203 million; analysts expect revenue of $210 million and earnings of 2 cents a share in the 2003 second quarter. Lamar is an outdoor advertising operator.