Phone business tough: AT&T said it added 2.3 million wireless customers in the USA, but as has been the case for a couple years now, almost all the gains came from connected cars and other non-phone devices.
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Wall Street expects AT&T to report 73 cents per share in the second quarter from $39.79 billion in sales, a drop of 2% from the carrier's $40.52 billion top line in the same period a year ago. That's compared with a gain of 257,000 customers in the April-June quarter a year ago. "The offers will be attractively priced because there will be a large number of devices - not only phones but also cameras and other connected devices - that add the ability for us to get good economics on price points" for first responders. This year's shift to unlimited plans has cut into the fees charged by phone companies when customers go over their data caps on some limited-data plans. Stephenson reiterated AT&T's intention to begin to deploy services on those airwaves by the end of the year. Those customers grew by 152,000 to 491,000 in the second quarter.
AT&T's stock was up almost 3 percent after the announcement. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were 79 cents per share, beating the 74-cent estimate of the 20 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.
Consumer Mobility revenues were down 4.8% at $7.8 billion. Shares are down 15% for the year. The Standard & Poor's 500 index has increased 11 percent.
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