Verizon Lags Chief Rival AT&T In Wireless Subscriber Additions

Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. closed down 43 cents on Friday after the company reported disappointed wireless-subscriber additions for the third quarter.

Verizons 584,000 net new postpaid customers paled in comparison to chief rival AT&Ts 745,000 additions. AT&T continues to benefit from its exclusive deal Apple iPhone deal while Verizon is only rumored to be in line for the coveted device some time early next year.

Still, Verizon remains the largest wireless operator in the United States, boasting 93.2 million users. And Big Red is doing well by offering iPhone alternatives such as the Android-based Motorola Droid. Due in part to that adoption, Verizon expects its second-half earnings to be 5 to 10 percent higher than they were in the first six months of the year.

For now, Verizon is riding the wave that is Wall Streets disappointment. Investors were unhappy with the companys 25 percent drop in profit; net income was impacted by a one-time pension settlement and lackluster landline operations. Verizons wireline division, despite the growth of FiOS services, barely broke even. All in all, Verizon earned $881 million in the July-to-September quarter, compared to $1.176 billion a year earlier. Revenue fell 3 percent to $26.5 billion from $27.3 billion.

Shares of Verizon closed at $32.09 on Oct. 22.

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