Expect Strong Q1 Earnings From Level 3

Level 3 Communications is expected to build on its $14 million profit from the fourth quarter of 2013 when it releases its first-quarter 2014 earnings report Wednesday.

Business momentum, including core network services growth supported by IP VPN, CDN and data-center products, is expected to continue, according to Canaccord Genuity analyst Greg Miller. He says that a year of belt-tightening really appears to be paying off for a company that’s been burdened with a lot of debt over the years.

“Following a year of cost-cutting, which generated improved operating results, we look to the Q1 report for signs of continued momentum. While further opportunities exist to make the company leaner, we believe revenue growth will be the focus of both management and investors in 2014,” Miller noted. “The company has long had the asset base necessary to create a solid global business, and we believe steps taken last year have set the stage for accelerating revenue growth and margin expansion.”

Canaccord maintained its “buy” rating on Level 3 stock, with a target of $41. It sat at $36.37 just after the closing bell on Monday.

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