Time Warner Inc. said profit rose 79% in the fourth quarter, aided by its acquisition of Turner Broadcasting System Inc. and three hit movies, although its losses grew for the full year. The New York-based communications giant said net income jumped to $59 million in the quarter ended Dec. 31, although that translated to a loss of 3 cents a share after payment of preferred dividends, compared with a profit of $33 million, or 1 cent a share, in the 1995 quarter. Analysts had expected a 9-cent loss. Results were boosted by strong showings at Home Box Office and the cable television business at Turner, as well as the movies “Twister,” “Eraser” and “A Time To Kill.” Shares rose $1.875 to close at $41.50 on the NYSE. . . . Meanwhile, Westinghouse Electric Corp., the parent of CBS, posted a wider loss in the fourth quarter due to restructuring expenses and costs related to news coverage in the election year. The Pittsburgh-based company lost $34 million, or 8 cents a share, compared with $7 million, or 2 cents a share, in the same period a year earlier. The 1996 loss included a $91-million restructuring charge. Also hurting earnings were payments to purchase sports broadcast rights. The earnings matched analysts’ estimates. Westinghouse’s media group, which includes radio, television and network holdings, earned $102 million in the fourth quarter before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. Shares rose 50 cents to close at $17.875 on the NYSE.
Acquisition Boosts Time Warner Profit
Times Staff and Wire Reports