AT&T Net Income Down 15 Percent

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Telecommunications giant AT&T reported net income of US $3.2 billion for the second quarter of 2009, down more than 15 percent from the second quarter of 2007, spurred by sagging revenues in its traditional voice and directory businesses.

The company's revenue dipped slightly, from $30.9 billion in the second quarter of 2008 to $30.7 billion this past quarter.

AT&T's voice revenue was down by more than 13 percent and directory revenue down more than 12 percent from a year earlier, while expenses grew by nearly 4 percent.

Wireless revenue, however, grew by nearly 10 percent, from $10.9 billion in the second quarter of 2008 to just under $12 billion this past quarter. AT&T's exclusive handset deal with Apple's iPhone has driven up wireless revenue in recent quarters, and this one was no exception. AT&T reported 2.4 million iPhone activations in the quarter, with about a third of those iPhone customers new to AT&T.

Apple launched its new iPhone 3GS in mid-June.

AT&T also reported a 37 percent increase in wireless data revenue, to $3.4 billion, driven by wireless messaging, Internet access and access to applications, the company said in a press release.

Overall, AT&T reported a 1.4 million net gain in wireless subscribers for the quarter, with 79.6 million total subscribers. That's 6.7 million more subscribers than at the end of the second quarter in 2008.

AT&T's earnings per share for the quarter was $0.54, compared to $0.63 a year ago.

"Our wireless momentum is excellent, operational execution and cost management continue to be strong, and in a challenging economy we delivered solid results," Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

AT&T also added 112,000 new wireline broadband subscribers during the quarter, compared to a net increase of just 46,000 for the second quarter of 2008. AT&T's total broadband connections, including wireline subscribers and wireless customers with 3G LaptopConnect cards, now number 16.9 million, an increase of 209,000 in the quarter.

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