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Optical/IP

BT Cuts Jobs, Capex

10:10 AM -- BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) reported its fourth-quarter and full year financial results Thursday morning, and they make for grim reading. The British carrier's fourth-quarter loss pushed its full year profit line into the red, causing the operator to announce plans to cut 15,000 posts during the current fiscal year.

While BT's revenues for the 12 months to the end of March were up 3 percent to £21.4 billion (US$32.4 billion), fourth-quarter charges related to the carrier's troubled Global Services unit sent BT into a full year loss of £134 million ($203 million) compared with a profit the previous year of nearly £2 billion ($3 billion). (See BT Reports Q4 and BT's Numbers Hit by Rogue Unit.)

The carrier is also expecting revenues in the current year to fall by 4 to 5 percent.

That's put the pressure on BT to cut costs further; so, having cut 10,000 consultancy and non-full-time staff posts and 5,000 full-time posts during the past financial year, the carrier expects "further reductions of a similar level" during the current fiscal year. It also recently put a freeze on salaries. (See BT Freezes Pay and BT Adds to Headcount Cull.)

BT is also cutting its full year capital expenditure budget for the year to March 31, 2010, by more than 12 percent to £2.7 billion ($4.1 billion).

The carrier's share price is down nearly 4.5 percent to £0.90 today on the London Stock Exchange.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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