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General Cable shares fall on weak 1Q guidance

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. (AP) -- Shares of General Cable Corp. tumbled Monday after the wire maker reported fourth-quarter results that matched Wall Street predictions, but issued lower-than-expected guidance for the current quarter.

General Cable expects the first quarter to be its weakest of the year, hurt by problems in Europe, the Mediterranean and its "rest of the world" market. It projected an adjusted first-quarter profit of 22 to 32 cents per share on $1.55 billion to $1.60 billion in revenue.

Analysts, on average, expect a profit of 48 cents per share on $1.66 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

General Cable also said that it still plans to restate its results for the third quarter of 2011 to correct accounting errors related to an inventory theft in Brazil. The company said that its review of the accounting errors found that a substantial part of what was previously believed to be system-related accounting errors actually resulted from the theft.

Because of the restatement, the company didn't provide year-ago figures for its fourth-quarter and 2012 results.

For the quarter ended Dec. 31, the Highland Heights, Ky.-based company posted a fourth-quarter loss of $17.3 million, or 35 cents per share. Excluding one-time items adjusted profit was 28 cents per share.

Revenue rose 6 percent to $1.60 billion.

Analysts, on average, expected a profit of 28 cents per share on $1.61 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

General Cable shares fell $2.81, or 8.2 percent, to $31.36 in afternoon trading, after dropping as low as $31.18 earlier in the session. Over the past 52 weeks, the stock has traded between $23.73 and $35.23.