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Local earnings

Shoppers leave Kohl's department store in Columbus, Ohio. Kohl's is reporting strong sales this year.

Shoppers leave Kohl’s department store in Columbus, Ohio. Kohl’s is reporting strong sales this year.

Terry Gilliam, Associated Press

Several companies reported quarterly earnings results on Thursday.

Delta

Delta Air Lines Inc., the nation's third-largest carrier, said Thursday it swung to a $52 million profit in the third quarter thanks in part to a one-time gain due to a decrease in previously estimated pre-bankruptcy claims for restructuring of aircraft financing deals.

The Atlanta-based company, which is operating under bankruptcy protection, said the profit for the three months ended Sept. 30 amounted to 22 cents a share, compared to a loss of $1.13 billion, or $6.73 a share, for the same period a year ago.

Excluding reorganization items, Delta said it lost $46 million in the quarter.

Revenue in the July-September quarter rose 8.1 percent to $4.66 billion from $4.31 billion in the same period a year ago.

The net profit in the third quarter included a $98 million non-cash gain from reorganization items, which primarily related to the aircraft financing arrangements issue. It was Delta's first net profit since it entered bankruptcy in September 2005.

"We're encouraged," Ed Bastian, Delta's chief financial officer, said in an interview. "We won't be happy until we're out of bankruptcy and have a secure future."

For the first nine months of the year, Delta said it lost $4.22 billion, or $21.53 a share, compared to a loss of $2.60 billion, or $17.07 a share, for the same period a year earlier. Nine-month revenue rose 6.3 percent to $13.03 billion from $12.26 billion recorded a year earlier.

Delta ended the quarter with $2.8 billion of unrestricted cash on hand.

Delta has lost more than $16 billion since January 2001. In recent months, it has begun to turn things around thanks to higher revenues, lower labor costs and easing fuel prices. Delta expects to emerge from Chapter 11 by the middle of 2007.

Also Thursday, the company said it would recall 1,000 flight attendants next year to help in part with its international expansion. The company also filed its monthly operating report for September with the bankruptcy court. It reported a net loss of $6 million in the month. Excluding reorganization items, the net loss for the month was $134 million.

Delta reiterated Thursday that it plans to emerge from bankruptcy as a standalone carrier. Bastian also reiterated that Delta has no plans right now to sell subsidiary Comair.

Disney

Profit at media conglomerate The Walt Disney Co. soared 89 percent in the fourth quarter, reflecting strong performance of its movies worldwide, increased attendance at its theme parks and higher revenue from its ESPN cable channel.

The Burbank-based company reported net income of $782 million, or 36 cents per share for the quarter ended Sept. 30, compared to $379 million, or 19 cents per share in the same period last year.

Revenue increased to $8.784 billion from $7.734 billion in the same period last year.

The company also delivered a 34 percent increase in net income for the full year, driven primarily by a sharp increase in profits at its studio.

Disney shares rose 48 cents, or 1.5 percent, Thursday to a five-year closing high of $33.58.

J.C. Penney

J.C. Penney Co. said its third-quarter earnings rose 22.6 percent on solid sales during the back-to-school period.

For the quarter ended Oct. 28, the company reported net income of $287 million, or $1.26 per share, compared with $234 million, or 94 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose to $4.78 billion from $4.48 billion a year ago.

Penney shares rose $1.35, or 1.73 percent, to close at $79.55 on the New York Stock Exchange, after hitting a 52-week high of $81.40 earlier in the day.

Lee Enterprises

Newspaper publisher Lee Enterprises Inc., which publishes the Provo Daily Herald, said its fiscal fourth-quarter profit declined by 17 percent due to acquisition-related costs and losses from the sale of discontinued operations.

Net income dropped to $10.9 million, or 24 cents per share, compared with $13.1 million, or 29 cents per share, a year ago.

Results included expenses totaling 2 cents per share related to Lee's acquisition of Pulitzer Inc. Net income was further reduced by 11 cents a share due to losses stemming from the sale of discontinued operations.

Quarterly revenue edged up to $279.7 million from $279.2 million, missing Wall Street's estimate of $288.5 million.

Full-year earnings sagged 8 percent to $70.8 million, or $1.56 per share, compared with $76.9 million, or $1.70 per share, a year ago. Full-year revenue climbed to $1.13 billion versus $818.8 million in the previous year.

Lee owns 52 daily newspapers and has a joint interest in six others, an online business and more than 300 weekly newspapers and specialty publications in 23 states.

Shares of Lee fell 55 cents, or 1.9 percent, to close at $28.35 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Viacom

Entertainment conglomerate Viacom Inc. reported a 16 percent decline in net earnings for its third quarter on lower movie income and a compensation charge for dismissing its former chief executive, Tom Freston.

Viacom, which owns MTV, Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks, Nickelodeon and VH1, earned $356.8 million, or 50 cents per share, in the three months ending in September, versus $423.3 million, or 56 cents per share, a year ago.

Revenues rose 7 percent to $2.66 billion, just ahead of the $2.63 billion that analyst had been expecting. A 10 percent gain in cable networks revenues was offset by a smaller rise of 1 percent in entertainment.

The company's widely held Class B shares fell $1.30, or 3.28 percent, to close at $38.37 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Kohl's

Midlevel retailer Kohl's Corp. said profit rose 44.5 percent in the third-quarter on continued strong sales and raised its profit guidance for the year.

The retailer, based in Menomonee Falls, Wis., said net income rose to $224.5 million, or 68 cents per share per share, in the period ended Oct. 28, from $155.1 million, or 45 cents a share, a year ago. Sales were up more than 16 percent to $3.6 billion from $3.1 billion in the same quarter last year.

Shares of Kohl's closed down 51 cents, less than 1 percent, to $72.94 in trading Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange.

Dynatronics

Salt Lake-based Dynatronics Corp. reported a net loss of $175,008, or 2 cents per share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30. That compares with a net loss of $22,321, or break-even per share, for the year-earlier quarter.

Sales totaled $4.1 million, down from $4.4 million in the prior-year period.

Dynatronics manufactures, markets and distributes medical devices, orthopedic soft goods and supplies, treatment tables and rehabilitation equipment.

The company's stock fell 26 cents Thursday to close at $1.18. During the past year, the price has ranged from $1.12 to $1.76.


Contributing: Associated Press.