Disney Earnings Beat Forecasts; Shares Rise

Walt Disney Co.
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Disney reported earnings and revenue that beat Wall Street expectations for the latest quarter on strength in its parks and recreation and studio businesses. The stock shot higher in extended hours trading.

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The media giant posted fiscal second-quarter net income of $1.51 billion, a 32 percent increase from the $1.14 billion earned a year earlier.

Earnings excluding items were 79 cents a share, up 36 percent from 58 cents a share in the year-earlier period.

Revenue increased 10 percent to $10.55 billion from $9.63 billion a year ago.

Wall Street was expecting Disney to post earnings of 77 cents per share on revenue of $10.49 billion, according to estimates from Thomson Reuters.

Revenue at its media networks rose 6 percent to $4.96 billion from a year earlier, due to growth at ESPN. Revenues at its parks business rose 14 percent to $3.3 billion while its studio business saw a 13 percent increase in revenues to $1.34 billion.

"Obviously, our parks and resorts had a great quarter that was helped a lot by some of our new investments notably at Disney Land and in Florida but also our new cruise ship and investments in Hong Kong," Bob Iger, Disney's CEO, told CNBC.

In addition to its investments, Iger said a steadily improving economy has helped attendance and revenues.

After a blockbuster weekend, Iger told CNBC Iron Man 3 has already done over $711 million in global box office.

"Not only does it validate a strategy of big franchise films that we leverage across our businesses but it bodes very well for Marvel," Iger said, adding that he hopes to bring "Iron Man" back again. In the second quarter, the studio business benefited from box office success of its "Oz The Great And Powerful."

Asked about the advertising market, Iger said, "We are reasonably bullish about the prospects for advertising for the rest of the year."