US telecommunications giant AT&T on Thursday reported a $6.68 billion loss for the fourth quarter, citing a costly charge for ending its planned acquisition of wireless carrier T-Mobile.
The loss in the final quarter was $1.12 per share, including a one-time charge of 44 cents per share for the decision to break off the merger, the company said in a statement.
It said that after adjustments, the company had earnings per share of 42 cents, in line with analyst forecasts.
AT&T said it had fourth-quarter revenues of $32.5 billion, up 3.6 percent from the year-ago period on record mobile broadband sales.
But the telecom giant's fourth quarter swung into an operating loss of $9.0 billion, compared to operating income of $2.1 billion in the 2010 fourth quarter.
For all of 2011, the company said net income fell to $3.9 billion from $19.2 billion in 2010, on revenues that rose 2.0 percent to $126.7 billion.
AT&T chairman and chief executive Randall Stephenson said the company ended the year with "excellent momentum across our growth platforms."
"This was a blowout quarter for smartphone sales. Our network performance is at a high level on voice quality and best-in-class mobile download speeds."
Stephenson said the company was "well positioned to deliver solid results" in 2012 and would soon begin share repurchases.
AT&T dropped its $39 billion deal to buy T-Mobile USA and grab the lead in the US wireless business on December 19 after running into stiff opposition from US regulators.
AT&T said it would have to take a $4 billion charge for dropping the offer, first made in March, to buy T-Mobile from its parent Deutsche Telekom.
The move came after the Federal Communications Commission said the takeover would reduce competition across the country in the already thinly populated cellphone provider industry, and the Justice Department sued to block the deal on anti-competitive grounds.