Bell South Corporation invested in two wireless communications


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Bell South Corporation invested in two wireless communications operations in Brazil in the mid-1990s that are being accounted for under the equity method. The following note is taken from Bell South Corporation’s interim report for the quarter ended March 31, 1999: Note E—Devaluation of Brazilian Currency We hold equity interests in two wireless communications operations in Brazil. During January 1999, the government of Brazil allowed its currency to trade freely against other currencies. As a result, the Brazilian Real experienced a devaluation against the U.S. Dollar. The devaluation resulted in the entities recording exchange losses related to their net U.S. Dollar denominated liabilities. Our share of the foreign exchange rate losses for the first quarter was $280. These exchange losses are subject to further upward or downward adjustment based on fluctuations in the exchange rates between the U.S. Dollar and the Brazilian Real. In a press release announcing first quarter 1999 results, Bell South Corporation provided the following information (as found on the company’s Web site): Bell South Corporation (NYSE: BLS) reported a 15-percent increase in first quarter earnings per share (EPS) before special items. EPS was 46 cents before a non-cash expense of 14 cents related to Brazil’s currency devaluation. Bellsouth Corporation: 3/31/99 3/31/98 %Change Reported net income $615 $892 280 — Foreign Currency Loss 280 — Gain on Sale of ITT Directories – (96) Normalized net income $895 $796 12.4% Reported Diluted EPS $0.32 $0.45 (28.9%) Foreign currency loss 0.14 — Gain on sale of ITT directories — (0.05) Normalized Diluted EPS $0.46 $0.40 15.0% Required Given the disclosure provided by Bell South Corporation, answer the following questions: 1. Why did the company report a foreign currency loss as a result of the devaluation of the Brazilian real? 2. What does the company mean when it states: “These exchange losses are subject to further upward or downward adjustment based on fluctuations in the exchange rates between the U.S. Dollar and the Brazilian Real”? 3. What is the company’s objective in reporting “Normalized Net Income”? Do you agree with the company’s assessment that it had a 15 percent increase in first-quarter earnings per share from the foreign currency financial statements and from the translated U.S.- dollar financial statements. Also, include a discussion of the meaning of the translated U.S.-dollar amounts for inventory and for fixed assets. daisy5
posted a question · Mar 29, 2013 at 10:24pm

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