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COMSAT profits in 4th quarter below estimates

THE BALTIMORE SUN

COMSAT Corp. ended a banner year on a slightly disappointing note yesterday as the Bethesda-based company fell short of earnings expectations for the final quarter of 1993.

The satellite communications company posted fourth-quarter earnings of $18.1 million, or 44 cents a share, compared with $16.9 million, or 43 cents a share, in the fourth quarter of 1992. Analysts' estimates had ranged from 45 cents a share to 52 cents a share, according to Zacks Investment Research.

COMSAT stock closed yesterday at $26.625, down 37.5 cents.

The lackluster fourth quarter closed a year that saw COMSAT register record revenue and double-digit income growth. The year-to-year growth was paced by gains in COMSAT's video-on-demand and wireless mobile satellite communications businesses, the company said. The video-on-demand business primarily serves hotels with in-room movies.

"The core fundamentals remain strong, and the outlook remains good," said analyst George Dellinger, who follows the company for Nat West Securities Corp. in Washington. He said the company's performance during the quarter was good considering the problems that were beyond its control, including a slowdown in commercial fishing activity.

COMSAT Corp.

.. .. .. .. .. Ticker .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..Yesterday's .. .. .. .. .. Symbol .. . . .. .. .. .. Cls... .. Chg.

.. .. .. .. CQ .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..26 5/8 .. .. ..- 3/8

Period ended

12/31/93 .. .. .. .. .. .. 4th qtr.. .. .. .. Year ago .. .. .. .. ..Chg.

Revenue .. .. .. .. .. .. .$167,500 .. .. .. $156,500 .. .. .. .. ..+7.0%

Net Income .. .. .. .. .. .$18,100 .. .. .. ..$16,900 .. .. .. .. .. +7.1% Primary EPS .. .. .. .. .. . $0.44 .. .. .. .. ..$0.43 .. .. .. ... ..+2.3% .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 12 mos.. .. .. .. .. Year ago .. .. .. .. Chg.

Revenue .. .. .. .. .. ..$640,400 .. .. .. .. ..$563,600 .. .. .. ..+13.6% Net Income .. .. .. .. ..$75,300 .. .. ... .. ..$42,900 .. .. .. .. +75.5% Primary EPS .. .. .. .. ..$1.85 .. .. .. .. .. .. $1.09 .. .. .. .. +69.7% Figures in thousands (except per share data.)

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