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Roundup: CBS, CVS, EK, IP, AVP

AP
Thursday, 30 Oct 2008 | 7:40 AM ET

A series of companies reported earnings Thursday, offered a mixed picture and generally cautious outlooks.

CBS Swings to Loss, Hurt by Impairment Charge

CBS says it swung to a third-quarter loss, weighed down by a hefty $14.12 billion impairment charge.

The New York-based media company reported a loss of $12.46 billion, or $18.58 per share, compared with a profit of $343.3 million, or 48 cents per share, a year ago.

CBS says it performed an interim impairment test earlier this month on existing goodwill and intangible assets, which resulted in the impairment charge.

CBS says adjusted earnings were 43 cents per share.

Revenue rose to $3.38 billion from $3.28 billion, helped by strong growth in its interactive division.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial forecast earnings of 40 cents per share on revenue of $3.37 billion.

Pharmacy Sales Boosts CVSCaremark

Drugstore operator and pharmacy benefits manager CVS Caremarksays its profit grew 7 percent in the third quarter as retail pharmacy revenue improved.

CVS says it earned $732.5 million, or 50 cents per share, up from $686.1 million, or 45 cents per share a year ago. It says revenue grew 2 percent, to $20.86 billion from $20.5 billion, with retail pharmacy revenue up 5 percent to $11.54 billion.

CVS says it earned 56 cents per share excluding one-time items. Thomson Reuters says analysts expected greater profit of 60 cents per share and $21.06 billion in revenue.

Better pharmacy sales and front-end revenue lifted CVS's retail pharmacy profit, and CVS says sales at older stores grew 3.7 percent. It says pharmacy services revenue fell about 1 percent.

Kodak Profit Jumps, But Forecast is Weak

Eastman Kodak says its third-quarter profit more than doubled, driven by sales of digital cameras and inkjet printers, but warns that full-year revenue will fall well below previous forecasts.

The Rochester, N.Y.-based photography products maker says quarterly earnings rose to $96 million, or 33 cents a share, from year-ago earnings of $37 million, or 13 cents a share. Excluding one-time charges and gains, profit totaled 22 cents per share.

Sales fell 5 percent to $2.41 billion from $2.53 billion, as revenue from digital businesses rose 2 percent to $1.64 billion but traditional film-based revenue slumped 18 percent to $764 million.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected profit of 28 cents a share on higher sales of $2.53 billion.

International Paper Profit Falls 31%

International Paper says its third-quarter profit fell 31 percent as higher costs of chemicals and wood offset increased prices.

International Paper Co. says its net income fell to $149 million, or 35 cents per share, from $217 million, or 51 cents per share, in the year-earlier period.

Earnings from continuing operations before special items were 84 cents per share.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected, on average, earnings of 77 cents per share.

Sales rose to $6.8 billion from $5.8 billion.

Avon Products' Profit Rises 60%

Avon Products said Thursday third-quarter profit rose 60 percent, boosted by strong foreign sales, demand for new products and a tax benefit.

Profit rose 60 percent to $222.6 million, or 52 cents per share, from $139.1 million, or 32 cents per share, last year.

Results in the most recent quarter included a 9 cent tax benefit.

Total revenue rose 13 percent to $2.64 billion from $2.35 billion, partly because of higher prices and 15 percent growth in sales of beauty products.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who usually exclude one-time items from their estimates, expected 50 cents per share and sales of $2.6 billion.

During the quarter, advertising costs rose 11 percent to $106 million, as Avon ramped up marketing efforts to launch new products, including its Anew Rejuvenate skin care line.

Avon also said active sales representatives, who sell Avon products to consumers, rose 5 percent, providing a boost to revenue.

Avon recorded strong sales growth abroad, especially in Latin America where revenue rose 25 percent. Elsewhere overseas, sales in China rose 25 percent and advanced 17 percent in Central and Eastern Europe.

Sales growth in North America rose just 3 percent. Sales of beauty products were flat, as the economy remained weak.

Looking ahead, New York-based Avon warned that softening consumer spending in North America and a higher U.S. dollar, if maintained at current levels, will crimp fourth-quarter results.

Avon still expects to achieve annual savings of $430 million, once its restructuring program is completed, which has included job cuts and outsourcing work to countries with cheaper labor costs.

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CBS
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KODK
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IP
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