[4/21/17] Verizon’s profit sunk 20 percent in its first quarter as it lost subscribers for its wireless cellphone service.
Shares dropped more than 2 percent in Thursday premarket trading. The stock has fallen more than 8 percent since the beginning of the year.
The New York company said that it lost 307,000 wireless subscribers who are billed each month, the more lucrative kind of wireless customer. Verizon said it would have lost even more subscribers during the first three months of the year if it didn’t launch its unlimited wireless service in February. Last year during the same period, it added 640,000 subscribers.
Verizon Communications Inc., the largest U.S. cellphone carrier, is facing increased competition from rivals Sprint and T-Mobile who have been offering cheaper plans. Verizon brought back unlimited plans in February, hoping to attract new subscribers.