Viacom Inc. reported net earnings rose 20% to $884 million, or $2.21 per share during the fourth quarter, compared with $732 million, or $1.72 per share, in the year-earlier period. Adjusted earnings per share were $1.54, while the FactSet consensus was $1.55. Revenue for the quarter dropped to $3.78 billion, compared with $3.99 billion during the same period a year ago. The FactSet consensus was $3.9 billion. The company said currency fluctuation had an impact on the quarter, as Viacom launched 21 channels overseas during fiscal year 2015, including six channels in India. The media networks segment grew 5% to $2.79 billion, due to growth in affiliate fees and advertising revenue internationally, which was offset by declining domestic ad revenue. Viacom said revenue for Paramount Pictures dropped 20% to $447 million, due to tough comparisons at the box office a year ago. Shares of Viacom are down more than 34% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 index is up 0.78% in the year. Viacom shares were inactive in pre-market trade on Thursday.
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