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SYDNEY, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Australia's largest telecoms company, Telstra Corporation Ltd, on Thursday posted an unexpected 11.8 percent fall in first-half profit, dragged down by falling revenues for its mainstay fixed-line and mobile telephone business.
Telstra said in a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange that its underlying profit for the six months to Dec. 31 was A$1.79 billion ($1.4 billion), lower than company guidance for mid-to-high single-digit profit growth through the year. It also missed analysts' expectations for an underlying profit of A$2.04 billion.
The company announced a steady interim dividend of 15 cents per share. ($1 = 1.2958 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Tom Westbrook; Editing by Hugh Lawson)