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Sinclair Broadcast posts lower 1Q net income

BALTIMORE (AP) -- TV station operator Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. said Monday that its first-quarter net income fell sharply, as higher revenue wasn't enough to make up for increased expenses.

The company earned $17 million, or 21 cents per share, in the first three months of the year. That's down 42 percent from $29.4 million, or 36 cents per share, in the same period a year earlier.

Revenue rose 27 percent to $282.6 million from $222.4 million, falling short of Wall Street's expectations.

Analysts, on average, were expecting lower earnings of 17 cents per share on revenue of $301.6 million, according to a poll by FactSet.

The quarter's operating costs rose 35 percent to $219 million from $162.5 million. Other costs, including interest expenses, were $38.3 million, up from $26 million a year earlier.

Separately, the company also said it plans to sell 14 million of its Class A shares in a public offering. It said it plans to use the proceeds for potential acquisitions and for general corporate purposes.

Including pending deals, Sinclair owns and operates, or provides services to, 134 stations in 69 markets.

Shares of the Baltimore-based company fell $1.07, or 3.9 percent, to $26.42 in late morning trading. The stock has traded in the 52-week range of $24.55 and $26.69.