CBS just delivered an answer to investors who wonder when the company — whose share price has appreciated 80% over the last 12 months — will run out of gas: Not yet, even during a period that included its 32-day run-in with Time Warner Cable. The broadcaster’s Q3 net income for continuing operations, at $494M, is +26.3% vs the period last year on revenues of $3.63B, +11.3%. The top line beat the $3.53B that analysts expected. Diluted earnings at 76 cents a share matched the consensus forecast. First cycle domestic sales of NCIS: Los Angeles and The Good Wife contributed to a 12% increase in revenues, to $1.88B, at the Entertainment unit which includes the CBS network and TV studios. Cash flow also was up 12% to $431M. Ad sales at the TV network were +13%. The cable networks, led by Showtime, also had a strong quarter as the company licensed Dexter and offered a Floyd Mayweather fight on pay-per-view. Revenues here were +37% to $596M with cash flow +15% to $261M. The Simon & Schuster publishing operation also did well, as titles including Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep helped revenues to grow 7% to $224M with cash flow +10% to $39M. CEO Les Moonves notes that the company closed on the sale of its billboard business in Europe and Asia, with the separation of its U.S. business expected next year. “So clearly we are on track to close out the year in terrific shape, and we have great confidence in our ability to execute for our investors in 2014 as well.”
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