Disney Q1 Better Than Expected; Games Division Helps

Disney reported results for fiscal Q1 (which ended December 31), posting lower results than last year, yet performing better than analysts had expected.
The company reported net income of $256 million (13 cents a share), down from $438 million (21 cents a share) last year -- a per-share earnings drop of 38 percent. Revenues increased 6% to $7.5 billion. Of note, the company's consumer products division (which records revenues from Disney's videogame business) saw revenues decrease by 6% to $787 million, but increased its operating income by 9%, to $190 million. Disney said increases in worldwide merchandise licensing revenue and improvements at Disney Interactive resulted in improvements to the bottom line, and called out its Kingdom Hearts videogame as a specific success story. Hurting the company were its cable results, reflecting higher programming costs for NFL, MLB and NBA sports programming, and its studio entertainment division, which saw a decrease in worldwide theatrical film distribution. Because Disney's results were better than Wall Street was expecting, its stock is up $1.13 (7%) in midday trading, to $17.48.

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