DirecTV shares soar after strong 1Q results

DirecTV shares hit record high after 1st-quarter results surpass expectations

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of DirecTV hit a record high on Tuesday after the country's No. 1 provider of satellite TV services reported lower first-quarter earnings that nonetheless beat Wall Street's expectations.

The company reported net income of $690 million, or $1.20 per share, in the January-March period. That's down 6 percent from $731 million, or $1.07 per share, in the same period a year earlier. DirecTV had fewer outstanding shares in the latest quarter due to stock buybacks, which increased per-share earnings.

Its adjusted earnings were $1.43 per share. These figures exclude a charge related to currency devaluation in Venezuela. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected adjusted earnings of $1.07 per share, on average.

Revenue rose 8 percent to $7.58 billion from $7.05 billion. Analysts expected revenue of $7.53 billion.

Strong subscriber growth at DirecTV Latin America, along with higher revenue from U.S. users, helped drive the quarter's results higher.

The average monthly revenue that DirecTV gets per subscriber increased 4 percent to $96.95 from $91.99. DirecTV added 21,000 U.S. subscribers during the quarter, bringing the total to 21.1 million. DirecTV Latin America added 583,000 subscribers to bring the total to 10.9 million. DirecTV Latin America owns a 93 percent stake in Sky Brasil, a 41 percent stake in Sky Mexico and all of PanAmericana.

Shares of the El Segundo, Calif., company rose $3.85, or 6.6 percent, to $61.91 in afternoon trading. Earlier, the stock hit an all-time high of $62.07, according to FactSet.

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