updated 1/19/2005 9:15:59 AM ET 2005-01-19T14:15:59

Lucent Technologies Inc.’s profit fell 53 percent in its fiscal first quarter as expenses rose and operating income for its network services division plunged.

The telecommunications gear maker said Wednesday that net income for the quarter that ended Dec. 31 was $174 million, or 4 cents per share. That matched the consensus forecast of analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call.

In the year-ago quarter, Lucent posted net income of $374 million, or 7 cents per share.

Revenues totaled $2.34 billion, up 3 percent from $2.26 billion a year earlier. U.S. revenues were up 7 percent, to $1.45 billion, but overseas revenues dipped slightly to $885 million.

Operating income for Lucent’s wireless division jumped about 150 percent, to $390 million from $158 million a year ago. But operating income for its network services — or wireline — division dropped nearly 90 percent, to $23 million from $210 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2004.

“While the wireline market remains a challenge in the near term, we continue to execute on a long-term strategy of investing in areas that are critical to our vision of convergence,” Lucent Chief Executive Officer Pat Russo said in a prepared statement.

She said those key areas include next-generation optical equipment, mobile-high-speed data, broadband access, voice over Internet protocol, government and emerging markets, and services.

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