COMPANY TOWN ANNEX
Viacom Net Declines but Operating Results Rise: Viacom Inc. said its profit fell sharply in the third quarter but its operating results rose due to improvement at its MTV cable networks, Blockbuster video stores and Simon & Schuster books. The media and entertainment company earned $93.8 million, or 21 cents a share, in the three months ended Sept. 30, compared to $327.3 million, or $1.45 a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose to $3.06 billion from $2.14 billion. But the earnings and revenue figures are distorted because the company has been involved in a number of major deals since 1994 that have reshaped it and created numerous one-time charges and gains.