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Telstra net profit slumps 9.8%

Canberra, Aug. 28 (AP): Telstra Corp, Australia’s largest telecom company, today announced a 9.8 per cent slump in annual net profit to $ 2 billion.

The figure for the year ending June 30, 2002 fell short of market expectations. Analysts had forecast a net profit of about $ 2.1 billion.

The company said the disappointing result came on the back of a 9.5 percent fall in total revenue to 20.8 billion australian dollars (dlrs 11.5 billion).

After the announcement, the stock fell to $ 2.66.

Telstra said total revenue and net profit had fallen only because in the previous fiscal year they had been boosted by significant one-time items such as gains from asset sales.

The company said that underlying sales revenue, which excludes once-only items, grew 1.7 per cent to $ 10.37 billion during the year.

Telstra declared a final dividend of 6 cents a share, unchanged from a year ago.

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