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21st Century Fox earnings: 39 cents per share, vs expected EPS of 37 cents

Quarterly earnings for 21 Century Fox topped Wall Street estimates but revenue came in below projections as gains in sports advertising revenue were dragged down by losses in entertainment.

The film and TV company now led by CEO James Murdoch posted fiscal fourth-quarter profit of 39 cents per share on $6.21 billion in revenue, down from the $8.42 billion in the year-earlier period.

Wall Street had expected 21st Century Fox to deliver quarterly earnings per share of 37 cents on $6.41 billion in revenue, according to consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters.

The company announced a $5 billion authorization to its stock buyback program as well as a 15 cent dividend.

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"We made clear operational strides over the last year that will further position us to benefit from the strong and growing global demand for high-quality video content," Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch said.

Shares of 21st Century Fox were up as much as 1.66 percent in extended-hours trading before turning marginally lower.

21st Century Fox
Scott Mlyn | CNBC

Quarterly television revenue came in slightly lower than expectations at $987 million and was down from the year-earlier period. Cable network programming as a whole beat estimates, swelling to $3.57 billion, and was up from the same period a year ago.

Domestic affiliate revenue rose 12 percent, as domestic advertising revenue fell 2 percent, due in part to underperfoming entertainment ad revenue at FX Networks on lower ratings.

James Murdoch, the son of 21st Century Fox Founder Rupert Murdoch, succeeded his father to become the company's CEO on July 1.

Shares of 21st Century Fox have fallen more than 10 percent on the year, lagging behind Disney shares which have gained 25 percent, even after pulling back a bit following mixed earnings on Tuesday.