Verizon's Third Quarter Was Better Than Expected

| About: Verizon Communications (VZ)

Verizon (NYSE:VZ) delivered a solid third quarter performance Friday, but the net wireless retail postpaid subscriber tally trailed rival AT&T (NYSE:T).

Verizon on Friday reported third quarter net income of $2.92 billion, or 31 cents a share, on revenue of $26.5 billion, down 2.9 percent from a year ago. The dip is due to businesses that were divested. Earnings were hit by a pension charge of 25 cents a share. Non-GAAP earnings were 56 cents a share, two cents ahead of Wall Street estimates.

The company also said its earnings outlook for the rest of the year will be at the high end of its previous range by about 5 percent to 10 percent.

Verizon Wireless added 997,000 net customers in the third quarter. That tally includes 584,000 postpaid customers. For comparison, AT&T added 745,000 postpaid customers in the third quarter and 2.6 million wireless subscribers overall—mostly due to connected devices.

In a statement, Verizon said it was benefiting from smartphone adoption. About 23 percent of its subscriber base has smartphones.

By the numbers:

  • Churn in the quarter was 1.07 percent.
  • Verizon Wireless ended the quarter with 93.2 million customers.
  • At the end of the quarter, Verizon Wireless had 7.9 million other connections such as machine-to-machine and telematics subscribers.

  • Verizon Wireless service revenue was $13.5 billion, up 5 percent from a year ago. Data revenue for the quarter was $4.8 billion, up 22.8 percent. Service revenue for wireless was $14.2 billion, up 7.7 percent.

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