Diebold Inc., a maker of security systems and automated teller machines, announces its fourth-quarter results have missed lowered expectations and foresees 2001 earnings falling below Wall Street estimates and results from the previous year.

For the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2000, the company posted net income of $34.9 million, or 49 cents per diluted share, on revenue of $477 million, compared with net income of $35.5 million, or 50 cents per share, on revenue of $366 million for the same period in 1999. Excluding goodwill amortization, fourth-quarter earnings were 53 cents per share, up from 52 cents per in 1999.

Analysts, on average, had expected the company to earn 50 cents per share, according to First Call/Thomson Financial, which tracks such data. That consensus had been lowered from 54 cents per share after the company said on Jan. 17 that it expected its profit to miss expectations due to the slower economy. “We are taking corrective action now, including the recent decision to close our facility in Staunton, Va., adjusting workforce in our other U.S. facilities and other significant cost reduction measures,” says Walden O’Dell, Diebold’s president and CEO. The company expects first-quarter 2001 earnings of 38 to 43 cents per share and full year earnings of $1.95 to $2.07 per share – well below earlier company estimates of $2.15 to $2.20.

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