July 25, 2012 / 12:26 PM / 7 years ago

UPDATE 2-Level 3 loss wider than expected on lower UK orders

* Q2 loss/shr $0.29 vs est $0.27 loss/shr

* Q2 rev $1.59 bln vs est $1.60 bln

* Shares fall 12 pct

July 25 (Reuters) - Online content delivery company Level 3 Communications Inc posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss on a fall in orders from the U.K. government, sending its shares down as much as 12 percent.

“Our EMEA business performance was weaker, primarily due to the expected declines in U.K. government revenue,” Chief Financial Officer Sunit Patel said in a statement.

The company, which operates internet backbone networks spanning North America and Europe, narrowed its net loss to $62 million, or 29 cents per share, from $181 million, or $1.59 per share, a year earlier.

Revenue of the Broomfield, Colorado-based company, which competes with AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc , rose 74 percent to $1.59 billion.

Analysts on average had expected a loss of 27 cents per share on revenue of $1.60 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Level 3 operates fiber-optic communications network that it leases out to telecom carriers for voice and data communication. Its content delivery unit targets video distributors and online portals.

Level 3 said it continued to expect core network services revenue, which contributes more than 80 percent of its sales, to grow sequentially for the rest of the year.

Core network service revenue increased 1 percent to $1.39 billion in the first quarter.

Level 3 shares fell to $18.00 on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

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