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Acxiom Corp. (ACXM) Sees Cloudy Skies Ahead

Acxiom Corp. (ACXM) posted a loss for the fiscal fourth quarter as costs to lay off workers and close properties ate into results, according to the marketing services company. Acxiom lost $58.3 million, or 76 cents per share, in the three months ended March 31, compared with profit of $5.7 million, or 7 cents per share, in the fiscal fourth quarter last year.

The company was squeezed by $107.2 million in costs stemming largely from a restructuring. The company spent $42.9 million to lay off workers and close properties, $13.5 million to close other operations, and $15 million to dispose of or write down assets. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial, on average, expected profit of 16 cents per share. Analysts typically do not include one-time charges in their estimates. The company did not provide an adjusted profit figure.

Revenue slipped 2 percent to $349.8 million from $356.4 million. The company had forecast revenue of about $350 million. Analysts expected revenue of $349.2 million. “We are working to develop strategic and operational plans to help overcome the current challenges we are facing in some industry sectors and to provide a springboard for growth in future years,” Chief Executive John Meyer said in a statement. Acxiom is restating several years of results to correct its accounting for accrued service revenue. The restatements will reduce net income by $2.4 million in 2006 and $2.9 million in 2007. Revenue will be reduced by a total of $52.2 million.

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