Telling It Like It Ain't

ANTHONY REDPATH/CORBIS

Insurance is driving miss crazy

Fresh from reporting Deutsche Telekom's first profit in two years — after making a European-record €24.6 billion loss last year — CEO Kai-Uwe Ricke promised last week that 2003 was "the year of the turnaround." DT isn't the only telecom dialing up good numbers: a string of other phone companies have reported positive results, including British Telecom, which last week posted a 40% gain in quarterly profits. But phone companies aren't off the hook. BT's €8.1 billion pension hole dwarfs its income. And better profits owe more to cost cutting and asset sales than to underlying performance — €1.7 billion of...

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