(By Mani) Time Warner Cable, Inc. (NYSE: TWC) reported better-than-expected fourth quarter profit as it grew high-speed data and voice subscribers and raised prices for services.
For the fourth quarter, net income attributable to shareholders was $513 million, or $1.68 per a share, compared to $564 million, or $1.75 a common share, in the prior year quarter.
Excluding certain tax matters, a 2011 asset impairment, net income was $479 million, or $1.57 a share, for the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to $447 million, or $1.38 a share, for the fourth quarter of 2011. Quarterly revenue increased 9.9 percent to $5.5 billion.
Analysts, on average, polled by Thomson Reuters had expected earnings of $1.55 a share on revenue of $5.5 billion for the fourth quarter.
Residential services revenue grew 6.8 percent to $4.6 billion, business services revenue rose 25.9 percent to $515 million, advertising revenue advanced 29.3 percent to $313 million.
Free cash flow for the full-year 2012 decreased 7.1 percent to $2.6 billion due mainly to lower cash provided by operating activities and an increase in capital expenditures. Cash provided by operating activities for the full-year 2012 was $5.5 billion, a 2.9 percent decline from $5.7 billion in 2011.
Net debt and mandatorily redeemable preferred equity totaled $23.5 billion as of Dec.31, 2012 compared to $21.6 billion in the same period last year, as the cash used for the acquisition of Insight, share repurchases and dividend payments was greater than free cash flow and the proceeds from the sale of SpectrumCo's advanced wireless spectrum licenses.
As of Dec.31, 2012, $2.2 billion remained under the company's share repurchase authorization. Time Warner Cable also paid regular dividends of $171 million and $700 million during the fourth quarter and full year of 2012, respectively.