AT&T, Verizon Earnings Offer Clues To Telecom Market

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AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) are two of the telecommunications providers in the U.S., so when they report earnings, Wall Street pays attention. AT&T reports tomorrow after closing bell, while Verizon will report Wednesday before opening bell.

In a report dated April 17, 2014, BMO Capital analysts Kevin Manning, Tim Long and their team provided a preview of what we can expect from both companies’ earnings reports. They see capital expenditures as being one of the most important parts of those reports. An announcement from AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) today will certainly have an impact on how much the carrier spends in this area.

AT&T capex to be flat

The BMO Capital team notes that AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) projected its capital expenditures to be flat this year at $21 billion. Manning expects total expenditures in this category to be $21.2 billion, which would be a .7% growth year over year. He notes that the shift from wireline to wireless continues and expects AT&T’s wireless capital expenditures to increase 10.8% year over year to $12.4 billion, while wireline falls 10.7% to $8.8 billion for the year. For the first quarter, the BMO team projects spending in the category to be about $4.9 billion, which is a 15.2% increase year over year, 8.9% sequential decrease and 23.1% of the full year spending.

In gross and net adds, they expect AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) to report 5 million in gross ads and 518,000 in net adds.

AT&T extends fiber-optic Internet service

Today AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) released a statement saying it plans to expand its fiber-optic service to cover up to 100 municipalities and cities. However, local officials in each of the areas will have to approve the company’s plan. AT&T wants to provide Internet speeds of up to 1 gigabit a second, which is approximately 100 times faster than standard access, according to Bloomberg.

Verizon capex to edge upward

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) had said it plans to spend between $16.5 billion and $17 billion on capital expenditures this year, which at the midpoint is a .9% increase year over year. Manning expects to see $17 billion in capital expenditures, with 6.2% growth in wireless spending and a 4.2% decline in wireline expenditures. For the first quarter, the firm expects capital expenditures to be $3.8 billion, which would be a 6.3% increase year over year and a 20.1% sequential decline.

The analysts are projecting that Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) will report 4.5 million retail gross adds and 555,000 net adds.

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