Alltel Corp. reported a modest earnings rise in the third quarter, as revenues from its local telephone operations remained flat.

The Little Rock-based company reported third-quarter net income of $85.3 million, or 45 cents per share, up 7% from the year-earlier period. Revenues advanced 6%, to $785.8 million.

Company officials said operating income for its information services division, formerly known as Systematics, totaled $34.5 million, up 4%.

"Information services reported positive comparisons in revenues and operating incomes in spite of continued soft sales in outsourcing and software," said Joe Ford, Alltel's chairman and chief executive officer. "Improved results (at the division) reflect cost control initiatives put in place earlier this year."

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