News briefing for Thursday, Feb. 14 »

Comcast surpassed analyst expectations with its fourth-quarter 2007 results, released this morning, and was rewarded with a 5% boost in its stock price, as shares reached $18.70, Reuters and report. Fourth-quarter net income rose 54%, to $602 million, or 20 cents a share, on revenue of $8.01 billion. That exceeded the 17 cents per share estimate expected by analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, and by Thomson Financial. Sales rose 14%, beating expectations, Bloomberg says.
    Comcast is also extending peace offerings to restless investors. The cable operator said it will pay out dividends and will buy back $6.9 billion in stock.
[Reuters | Bloomberg | CNNMoney]

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. is working on a deal to merge its Web business, in particular, MySpace, with Yahoo, the Los Angeles Times reports. Yahoo’s talks with News Corp. began shortly after Microsoft made a bid for the Internet company, the Times says. [Los Angeles Times]

Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius presented a Governor’s Distinguished Community Service Award yesterday to cable operator Sunflower Broadband, the Lawrence Journal-World reports. Sunflower was recognized for the free and discounted high-speed Internet service it offers to nonprofits, schools and libraries. [Lawrence Journal-World]

John Malone and Barry Diller agreed to keep IAC/InterActiveCorp’s board intact until a trial set for March, according to a Reuters report. Malone’s Liberty Media, IAC’s controlling shareholder, wants to replace board members, including IAC chairman Diller. [Reuters]

MGM HD has reached a carriage agreement with RCN, which extends the reach of the channel into Illinois, Minnesota, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Oregon and Ohio. The programmer recently made deals with DirecTV and Verizon.

Verizon purchased ClearCurve bendable optical fiber cables from Corning Inc. to use in the expansion of its FiOS network into large apartment buildings in East Coast cities.

Cox Arizona will carry The Pentagon Channel on its digital tier starting tomorrow. Other than Hawaii, it’s the first statewide launch of The Pentagon Channel by an MSO. Yesterday’s news briefing. 

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