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Voicestream falls short of 3Q forecasts

    Voicestream Wireless (Nasdaq: VSTR) missed analyst estimates in the third quarter.

    After market close Monday, wireless communications service provider reported a third quarter net loss of $86.4 million, or 90 cents a share, not including a charge related to the restructuring of employee stock options. Including that non-cash expense stemming from Voicestream's spin-off from Western Wireless earlier this year, Voicestream lost $93 million, or 97 cents per share.

    First Call's survey of 15 analysts predicted a loss of 85 cents per share for the quarter ended Sept. 30.

    Third quarter revenue rose to $128.1 million, from $46.2 million in the year-ago period. Services led the way with revenue of $109.9 million, a 219 percent gain year-over-year. Voicestream picked up 122,500 subscribers during the September quarter, bringing its total subscriber base to 675,700.

    Voicestream announced two acquisitions recently, Aerial Communications and Omnipoint. The company expects to close the deals in the first quarter of next year.

    Shares of Voicestream gained 1 5/8 to 90 1/2 in Monday's regular trading prior to the quarterly report. Among 18 Wall Street firms surveyed by Zack's Investment Research, 13 recommend Voicestream as a "strong buy", four maintain the equivalent of "moderate buy" ratings, and one has a "hold" advisory on the stock.>