set plans to buy back about $670 million in debt and raised its revenue growth estimate for 2001, but the company lowered its cash earnings per share outlook for the year because it will no longer report the results of its stake in



, Brazil's largest long-distance telephone company, with its own.

The long-distance and data services telco said it would repurchase $667 million of 8 7/8% senior notes due Jan. 15, 2006. Additionally, WorldCom now expects revenue to grow 12% to 15% for the year, up from the previous forecast of an 11% to 14% range. However, the company dropped its cash earnings projection to a range of $1.05 to $1.10 a share, from a prior range of $1.25 to $1.35. The consensus estimate was $1.20, according to the company.

WorldCom, which holds a 19% stake in Embratel, said it would separate its financial results from the Brazilian company's numbers, a move, along with other actions, that will cut into the company's cash earnings.

"Embratel continues to play an important role in WorldCom group's international growth strategy by extending our ability to offer global customers services throughout the world," the company said in a statement. "But continuing to consolidate Embrapar's

TST Recommends

the parent of Embratel financial results, even though we only have a 19% economic interest, was causing undue confusion in the market."

In the second quarter, the company expects revenue to increase 11% to 13% and total $5.3 billion to $5.4 billion. WorldCom also expects cash earnings of 28 cents to 29 cents a share, excluding currency effects and adjustments to the carrying cost of investments.

Worldcom has been restructuring its assets to cut costs, including separating its long-distance business from the

MCI Group


Internet and data operations.

Shares of WorldCom climbed 1% to $14.61 in recent