The Street set a low bar for Time Warner, and the company just barely crossed it. The entertainment giant reported Q2 net income of $429M, -32.7% vs last year, on revenues of $6.7B, -4.1%. Analysts expected revenues to be slightly higher at nearly $7B, but adjusted earnings at 59 cents a share beat forecasts by a penny. Time Warner’s cable networks saw 4% top line growth to $3.6B with pay TV distributor payments +6% — but ad sales only +2%. Some analysts predicted ad growth of at least 4%. The company says that improvements at its domestic entertainment networks, including TNT and TBS, were somewhat offset by weakness at CNN. But operating income was -5% to $974M due in part to the closing of networks in India and Turkey. Over at the Warner Bros studio, revenues were -8% to $2.6B while operating income was -13% to $134M as it struggled against comparisons with last year which included The Hangover Part II and home videos of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1. Time Warner’s magazine publishing unit revenues were -9% to $858M with operating income plummeting 43% to $72M as ad sales and subscriptions both declined. The company reaffirmed its forecast to end 2012 with a low double digit increase in adjusted earnings per share. “Across Time Warner, we’re continuing to make progress on our long-term goals, and we remain on track to meet our financial objectives for the year,” CEO Jeff Bewkes says.
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