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Thu 29 Jan 2009 03:09 PM

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Etisalat's Q4 net profit falls 19%; breaches forecasts

Telecom major earns $386.6m in Q4 versus analysts' estimates of $580-781m.

Emirates Telecommunications Co's (Etisalat) fourth-quarter net profit fell 19.3 percent to 1.42 billion dirhams ($386.6 million), missing analysts' forecasts.

The company's full-year profit rose to 8.665 billion dirhams compared with 7.297 billion dirhams in 2007, Etisalat said in a statement on Thursday, without giving quarterly data, which Reuters calculated from previous financial statements.

Analysts forecast of Etisalat's fourth-quarter profit ranged from 2.13 billion dirhams ($580 million) to 2.87 billion dirhams ($781.36 million), according to a Reuters survey last month. The average forecast was for a 37.5-percent rise in profit.

Etisalat earned 7.25 billion dirhams in the first nine months of 2008 and 1.76 billion dirhams in the fourth quarter of 2007. Earnings per share were 1.45 dirhams in 2008 compared to 1.22 dirhams in the previous year. (Reuters)

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