After-hours trading for CBS Corp. started out negative as word surfaced that The New Yorker could be printing a second Ronan Farrow-penned piece featuring the company’s Chairman/CEO Les Moonves and more accusations of sexual misconduct.
That may very well swing into a big gain on Friday, as CBS recorded a strong Q2 that beat Wall Street estimates.
With two law firms engaged to investigate Moonves, CBS noted that its total revenue rose to $3.47 billion, from $3.26 billion.
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S analysts had expected revenue of $3.46 billion.
Total revenue jumped thanks, in part, to Local Media improvement to $420 million, from $412 million. This was driven by higher retransmission revenues, which were partially offset by the absence of the National Semifinals and National Championship games of the NCAA Tournament. Cable network revenue improved to $591 million, from $571 million.
Advertising revenue was up to $1.33 billion, from $1.3 billion.
However, local media operating income was flat at $128 million, while cable network operating income was up to $256 million from $255 million.
Adjusted operating income was up to $694 million, from $690 million. Factoring in $35 million in restructuring and “other corporate matters,” total operating income fell to $659 million.
When all was said and done, net earnings came in at $400 million ($1.05 per diluted share), up from $58 million (14 cents).