IBM's Reports Revenue Growth After 22 Consecutive Declines -- Earnings Review

By Ted Greenwald and Austen HuffordFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

International Business Machines Corp. reported fourth-quarter and annual earnings Thursday. Here's what you need to know:

BLUE STREAK: IBM reported higher revenue for the first time in 23 quarters and signaled continued growth into 2018.

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TAX IMPACT: IBM took a $5.5 billion charge related to the new U.S. tax law, pushing it into the red. Due to the charge, IBM had a tax rate of 124% for the quarter and 49% for the year. IBM's adjusted tax rate, which excludes the one-time charge, was 6% for the quarter and 7% for the year.

REVENUE: Fourth-quarter revenue rose 3.6% from a year earlier to $22.54 billion. The last time IBM had revenue growth from the prior year was the first quarter of 2012.

PROFIT: The company reported a quarterly loss of $1.05 billion, or $1.14 a share, compared with profit of $4.5 billion, or $4.72 a share, a year earlier. On an adjusted basis, IBM had profit of $5.18 a share, a penny more than the $5.17 expected by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters.

SHARE REACTION: In post-market trading, shares fell 4.2%.

BROAD GROWTH: While revenue fell in the company's technology-services unit, its largest, the company saw growth in four other main units.

Write to Ted Greenwald at Ted.Greenwald@wsj.com and Austen Hufford at Austen.Hufford@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 18, 2018 17:25 ET (22:25 GMT)