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Disney Earnings Beat Forecast but Revenue Misses

CNBC.com
Tuesday, 7 Feb 2012 | 4:43 PM ET

Walt Disneyreported quarterly earnings thatbeat analysts' expectations, but its revenue missed Wall Street's forecast as attendance at its parks and resorts rose.

Cinderella's Castle
Flikr/cdharrison
Cinderella's Castle

Disney delivered fiscal first-quarter earnings excluding items of 80 cents per share, up from 68 cents a share in the year-earlier period.

Revenue was $10.78billion, up slightly from $10.72 billion a year ago.

Analysts had expected the company to report earnings excluding items of 72 cents per share on revenue of $11.18 billion, according to a consensus estimate from Thomson Reuters.

Disney CEO Robert Iger told CNBC after the earnings release that the higher attendance at Disney's theme parks is "very encouraging" and a sign of a strengthening economy.

"We’ve had increased attendance and increased spending" by those visiting, he said. "I think that says a lot about the American consumers… and the strength of our brand."

Disney's Iger on Q1 Results
Robert Iger, Walt Disney president & CEO, explains how the current quarter is trending in ad sales and parks bookings, with CNBC's Julia Boorstin and Maria Bartiromo.

While advertising revenue was up for Disney's broadcasting properties, ratings were down. Iger said the ratings drop at sports network ESPN, for instance, was from the National Basketball Association lockout, which didn't end until Christmas and deprived ESPN of weeks of games.

"Ratings are just fine at ESPN," Iger said.

After the earnings announcement, shares of the company fell 2 percent in trading after the closing bell.Get after-hour quotes for Walt Disney here.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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