Qwest Communications


posted a worse-than-expected loss Tuesday morning and stuck to last week's 2002 financial guidance, saying it will turn cash flow positive in the second quarter.

Qwest's first-quarter loss widened to $698 million, or 42 cents a share, from $46 million, or 3 cents a share, a year earlier. On a pro forma basis, excluding various costs, Qwest lost a dime a share in the latest period, reversing the year-ago 13-cent profit and falling short of the Wall Street consensus estimate.

Revenue slid 13.5% to $4.37 billion from $5.05 billion a year earlier, while adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization dropped 26% to $1.45 billion.

Sticking with its reduced guidance of a week ago, Qwest projected 2002 revenue of around $18.2 billion, EBITDA of around $6.5 billion and capital spending of $3.2 billion.

As expected, Qwest also wrote down its stake in

KPN Qwest

by $462 million.