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EARNINGS ROUNDUP: Best Buy, iTurf and FastNet report

Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE: BBY) reported Tuesday fourth-quarter earnings were 78 cents a share, topping First Call's expected profit of 74 cents a share.

Shares in the retailer of electronics, personal computers, entertainment software and appliances were up 1 5/8 to 77 ?. The company's third quarter earnings were in line with expectations.

Net earnings were up 51 percent to $163.8 million, or 78 cents a share, compared to the $108.8 million, or 51 cents a share reported in last year's fourth quarter. Sales for the fourth quarter also increased; they were up 25 percent to $4.32 billion from $3.46 billion a year ago.

The company also reported results for fiscal 2000, which showed net earnings were up 60 percent over 1999's to $347.1 million, or $1.63 a share.

The company said it expects current initiatives, including strategic alliances, its e-commerce business and increased store openings, will position it to create long-term shareholder value. Fiscal 2000 sales were $12.49 billion, a 24 percent increase over last year's $10.07 billion.

Best Buy competes with other electronics retailers such as Circuit City (NYSE: CC) and CompUSA (NYSE: CPU).

  • iTurf Inc. (Nasdaq: TURF) also topped estimates in its quarterly report Tuesday; the online teen network said net loss was 26 cents a share, compared to first call's predicted loss of 33 cents a share.

    iTurf shares were down 3/16 to 11 1/16 Tuesday morning.

    Net revenues for the fourth quarter increased to $14.0 million, nearly seven times the $2.1 million in the fourth quarter of last year.

    Net loss before amortization of intangible assets for the quarter was $5.0 million, or 26 cents a share, compared to net income of $422,000, or 3 cents a share for the comparable quarter one year ago. Net loss for the quarter, including amortization of intangible assets, was $6.0 million, or 31 cents a share, compared to net income of $403,000, or 3 cents a share a year ago.

    Net revenue for the year was $24.8 million, compared to $4.0 million reported last year. Net loss for the fiscal year including amortization of intangible assets was $14.3 million, or 84 cents a share, compared to net income of $425,000, or 3 cents a share, a year ago.

  • FastNet (Nasdaq: FSST) also reported its fourth quarter results. The company lost 33 cents a share, on target with First Call's consensus estimate.

    Shares in the web and application hosting provider were up 1/16 to 14 Tuesday.

    Revenue was $2.5 million, up 77 percent compared to $1.4 million in the fourth quarter of 1998. The company attributed the increase to its expansion into 4 new markets in the northeastern US, customer growth in the existing markets, and the acquisition of Internet Unlimited, a web hosting and colocation provider.

    Net loss for the fourth quarter of 1999 was $2.5 million, or 33 cents a share, as compared to a loss of $635,000, or 9 cents a share for the fourth quarter of 1998.

    The company's year-end results showed revenue of $8.4 million, as compared to $5.5 million in 1998. Net loss for 1999 was $5.6 million, or 77 cents a share, as compared to a net loss of $1.3 million, or 14 cents a share in 1998, an increase of 440 percent. .