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Verizon CFO Sees 2012 Spending Falling Below Last Year

(Corrects percentage drop in third paragraph of story that ran on Sept. 12.)

Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) Chief Financial Officer Fran Shammo said its capital spending will decline this year, putting the carrier at the lower end of its previous prediction.

“I think we’ll be slightly down from a year ago,” Shammo said today at a Bank of America investment conference in Beverly Hills, California. Verizon, based in New York, had originally projected that 2012 spending would be little changed or slightly lower than the $16.2 billion level in 2011.

Due to a tighter budget, Verizon had only spent $7.43 billion in the first half of 2012 -- 17 percent below the $8.9 billion spending pace of the year-earlier period. That means the full year forecast will probably be at the bottom of the company’s guidance range, Shammo said, signaling that Verizon won’t embark on a spending spree in the second half.

Verizon’s capital spending, which pays for a range of equipment and infrastructure, is closely watched by suppliers such as Ciena Corp. (CIEN), Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO), Alcatel-Lucent SA (ALU) and Tellabs Inc.

Verizon rose 1.5 percent to $44.89 at the close in New York. The shares have climbed 12 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Scott Moritz in New York at smoritz6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Turner at nturner7@bloomberg.net

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