Higher television ratings, a firmer ad market and big revenue gains in its radio and cable businesses helped Capital Cities/ABC earn $ 166.74 million last quarter, or a record $ 10.35 per share, up 21% and 24%, respectively, from 1992 ‘s comparable numbers.
That surge was close to mean Wall Street estimates of $ 10.23 per share.
Fourth-quarter net revenues rose 7% to almost $ 1.76 billion. Operating income grew 27% to nearly $ 302.50 million with a “significant” boost from a better advertising environment and growth of its audience, the Alphabet web said.
CapCities/ABC shares gained as much as $ 5 per in Tuesday’s trading before an overall market decline cooled sentiment to leave the stock up only $ 1 at $ 664.
For the full year ended Dec. 31, CapCities/ABC made $ 467.38 million, or a record $ 28.53 per share, excluding a one-timecharge of 74 cents but including a federal income tax provision of 73 cents a share. Even with that provision, 1993 net proved 22% better than the prior year’s $ 23.45 (before the effect of accounting changes).
Net revenues added 6% to $ 5.67 billion in 1993 and operating net jumped 19% to $ 862.15 million.
The ABC Television Network reported a “significant increase” in operating earnings, as did the radio operations and ESPN, the broadcaster said in a statement.
Analysts are forecasting that CapCities/ABC will continue to perform well in the first quarter despite the advertising threat posed by CBS’ coverage of the Winter Olympics.
“The first quarter is going to be tough because CBS pulled so much money out of the market with the Olympics,” analyst Melissa Cook at Prudential Securities said. She added, however, that she is raising earnings estimates for 1994 since the web is outperforming her previous expectations.