Bell Atlantic Corp. said fourth-quarter operating profit rose 12 percent as wireless phones proved to be popular holiday gifts and businesses bought more fast-data transmission services. Profit excluding one-time items rose to $1.22 billion, or 77 cents a share, from $1.09 billion, or 69 cents, a year earlier. Total sales rose 6.6 percent to $8.61 billion from $8.08 billion. In the quarter, Bell Atlantic said it took a charge of $67 million for costs related to its merger with Nynex Corp. It also took a charge of $432 million for an accounting adjustment. The charges resulted in net income of $719 million, or 45 cents a share. A year earlier a charge of $56 million resulted in net income of $1.03 billion, or 65 cents a share.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., which has operations in Buffalo, said fourth-quarter net income rose to $1.05 billion, or 52 cents a share, from profit from operations of $908 million, or 45 cents, in the year earlier period. Sales rose 11 percent to $5.41 billion from $4.89 billion. In the year-earlier quarter, a charge of $495 million stemming from litigation made net income $413 million, or 20 cents a share.
Eastman Kodak Co. reported a 21 percent jump in fourth-quarter profits. Excluding one-time charges and credits, the Rochester photography company said it earned $403 million, or $1.27 a share, up from $333 million, or $1.05 a share, in the same quarter a year ago. When one-time charges are included, Kodak's profit totaled $475 million, or $1.50 a share, up 81 percent from $272 million, or 83 cents a share, a year ago. Revenues rose 7 percent to $3.8 billion from $3.56 billion, propelled by a 15 percent jump in sales of rolls of film around the world.
Corning Inc., boosted by high demand for optical-fiber technology and liquid crystal display glass, posted a 34 percent jump in fourth-quarter net profits Monday. Corning said it earned $140.1 million, or 56 cents a share, in the October-December quarter, up from $104.3 million, or 44 cents a share, in the same quarter a year ago. Excluding one-time charges, earnings from continuing operations rose 28 percent to 51 cents a share. Sales surged 35 percent to $1.2 billion from $927 million. Excluding acquisitions, sales rose 25 percent.
Uni-Marts Inc. of State College, Pa., which operates convenience stores on the Southern Tier, said it earned $331,000, or 5 cents per share, in the first fiscal quarter of 2000 compared to a net loss of $289,000, or a loss of 4 cents per share a year earlier. Revenues for the quarter ended Dec. 31 were $70.2 million, up 14.9 percent from $61.1 million in the first quarter of fiscal 1999.
AMC Entertainment Inc. lost $8.9 million, or 38 cents a share, for the quarter that ended Dec. 30, compared with a loss of $1.7 million, or 7 cents a share, for the same period a year earlier. Revenue for the company's third quarter was up 10 percent to a record $285 million, compared with $260 million in the same period the previous year. In the first three quarters of its fiscal year, the company has closed 230 screens in older, outdated theaters.