Cable provider Charter Communications (CHTR) reported a jump in earnings for the third quarter helped by a pension remeasurement gain, adjusted EBITDA growth, and lower depreciation and amortization expenses. The bottom line came in above analysts’ expectations, while the top line missed consensus estimates. Charter stock was down about 5% during the pre-market trading hours.
Net income for the quarter climbed to $493 million or $2.11 per share from $48 million or $0.19 per share last year. Total revenues rose 4.2% to $10.9 billion, driven by growth in Internet, video, commercial and advertising revenues.
Excluding advertising revenue, which benefited from political spend in the third quarter of 2018, pay-per-view and video on demand revenues, which benefited from the Mayweather-McGregor pay-per-view event in the third quarter of 2017, and mobile revenue, revenue grew 4.1% year-over-year.
Video revenues rose 2.9% on annual rate adjustments, promotional roll-off and higher bundled revenue allocation relating to the launch of Spectrum pricing and packaging in Legacy TWC and Legacy Bright House.
Internet revenues grew 7.2% driven by growth in Internet customers during the last year and promotional roll-off. However, voice revenues fell 16.2% due to value-based pricing, lower bundled revenue allocation relating to the launch of Spectrum pricing and packaging in Legacy TWC and Legacy Bright House, and a decline in voice customers over the last twelve months.
Commercial revenues rose 4.3% on enterprise revenue growth of 6.4% and SMB revenue growth of 2.8%. Advertising sales increased 18.1% driven by higher political revenue.
During the third quarter, Charter’s residential customer relationships grew by 192,000, up from 172,000 in the previous year quarter. Residential PSUs increased by 93,000, lower than 172,000 additions a year ago, due to a decline in voice net additions. Charter added 266,000 residential Internet customers in the third quarter.
Capital expenditures fell to $2.1 billion from $2.4 billion a year earlier. This decline was primarily driven by a drop in customer premise equipment spending for Spectrum migration, and lower scalable infrastructure spending given in-year timing differences. The latest quarter CapEx included $42 million of all-digital costs and $66 million of mobile launch costs.
Shares of Charter Communications ended Thursday’s regular session up 2.86% at $314.81 on the Nasdaq. The stock has fallen over 6% so far in the year and over 8% in the past year.
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