Disney Breezes Past Earnings Estimates

Walt Disney ( DIS) easily surpassed analysts' earnings expectations for the latest second quarter, even as revenue fell 4% from the same period a year ago.

The broadcasting and entertainment concern posted earnings, excluding charges and accounting changes, of $391 million, or 19 cents a share. Analysts expected the company to earn 13 cents, according to Thomson Financial/First Call. Disney earned $294 million, or 14 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter.

Revenue for the quarter ended March 31 fell to $6.05 billion from $6.29 billion last year.

The Burbank, Calif., company said parks and resorts revenue for the quarter increased 5% to $1.6 billion, while operating income remained flat at $331 million. Revenue for Disney's media networks fell 8% to $2.2 billion, and operating income dropped 9% to $489 million. Revenue for the studio entertainment division fell 5% to $1.6 billion, but operating income rose to $164 million from $46 million a year ago.

"Economic downturns are never good news, but historically, our company has always emerged from them stronger than ever," Disney said in a press release. "With this in mind, we remain confident in meeting or exceeding our fiscal goals for this year and about the long-term prospects for the Walt Disney Company.''

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