SingTel Q4 profit falls 33%, sees higher Ebitda this financial year

(REUTERS) - Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, South-east Asia's largest telecommunications operator, posted on Wednesday a 33 per cent fall in fourth quarter net profit, hurt by a one-time loss arising from the sale of its stake in Pakistan's Warid.

SingTel, Singapore's largest company by market capitalisation, earned $868 million in the three months ended March, down from $1.29 billion a year ago.

The Singapore telco's underlying net profit - which excludes one-off items - dipped 2 per cent to $1 billion from $1.02 billion a year ago.

Despite the weaker result, SingTel said it will pay a final dividend of 10 cents a share, up from 9.0 cents a year ago.

Looking ahead, Singapore said it expects consolidated revenue to be stable in the current financial year ending March 2014.

"Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda), however, is expected to grow by low single-digit level, led by productivity and yield management initiatives," it said.

SingTel reported $225 million of divestment loss from Warid, which was partly offset by $149 million of net dividend income from Southern Cross. SingTel had a non-recurring tax credit of $270 million in the year-ago quarter.