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Quebecor Inc. (TSX:QBR.B) says it had a $73.8-million profit in the fourth quarter, as it benefitted from growth in its telecommunications segment and productivity improvements in its news media.

A year earlier, the Montreal-based media company had a $343.6-million loss in the fourth quarter of 2008 as it wrote down the value of goodwill and other intangible assets.

Quebecor says its news media segment, which includes the Sun Media and Osprey newspaper chains, increased its operating profit by $14.5 million or 26.5 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2008.

The telecommunications segment, which includes the Videotron cable and phone business in Quebec, increased its operating income by $62.8 million or 28.8 per cent.

The profit for the three months ended Dec. 31 amounted to $1.15 per share, compared with a loss of $5.34 per share in the fourth quarter of 2008. Revenue from all segments grew $25.6 million to just under $1.03 billion.

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