CA reports Q4, makes settlement offer to gov't

Computer Associates (CA) has released its delayed fourth-quarter financial report, meeting the earnings and revenue forecasts it provided earlier this month.

CA had revenue for the quarter of $US850 million, up 10 per cent from $US775 million in last year's fourth quarter. Net income for the quarter was $US89 million, or $US0.15 per share. In last year's fourth quarter, CA lost $US106 million.

Excluding a number of special charges, CA reported operating earnings per share of $US0.18, at the high end of its earlier estimates and slightly above the $US0.17 consensus forecast of analysts polled by Thomson First Call. The calculation excludes expenses related to acquisitions and CA's settlement of shareholder litigation. A $US10 million charge for an offer CA made the government as part of settlement discussions about ending government probes of its past accounting violations is also excluded.

Interim CEO, Kenneth Cron, praised CA's performance as strong in a quarter filled with a number of distractions.

Cron became CA's head last month as part of a management overhaul stemming from a $US2.2 billion accounting fraud carried out in CA's 2000 and 2001 fiscal years. The company recently completed its internal investigation of the fraud and restated the affected financials, a process that led to its delay in releasing results from the just-ended quarter. Investigations by the US Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice are still in progress.

CA has also released its results from its 2004 fiscal year, ended March 31. Revenue for the year was $US3.3 billion, up 8 per cent from last year's $US3 billion.

CA's net income for the year was $US25 million, or $US0.04 per share, up from a $US267 million loss in 2003, or a loss of $US0.46 per share. Excluding the special charges, CA's operating earnings per share for the year were $US0.61, in line with analyst expectations.

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