updated 2/22/2006 11:08:17 AM ET 2006-02-22T16:08:17

Casino operator Harrah's Entertainment Inc. on Wednesday posted a hefty fourth-quarter loss, hurt mostly by hurricane-related expenses and costs from writing off a property it plans to sell.

The company's deficit amounted to $142.2 million, or 78 cents per share, compared with income of $76.9 million, or 68 cents, the year before. Without the items and charges, adjusted earnings of 66 cents per share topped the average 56-cent estimate from analysts polled by Thomson Financial.

Quarterly revenue of $2.09 billion was 76 percent higher than $1.19 billion a year earlier, reflecting the June acquisition of rival casino chain Caesars Entertainment and strength in its East and West regions. Analysts expected $2.06 billion in revenue.

For the year, earnings slid to $236.4 million, or $1.57 per share, from $367.7 million, or $3.26 per share, in 2004. Revenue, however, jumped 56 percent to $7.11 billion from $4.55 billion last year.

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