Paris-based telecom equipment builder Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU) reported third-quarter sales of $5.1 billion and an adjusted net loss of $0.08 per American depositary share earlier today. That's 7% year-over-year sales growth on a currency-adjusted basis, and a marked improvement from the year-ago period's $0.50 loss per ADS. Gross margins improved to 32.6%, compared to 27.8% a year ago.

S&P Capital IQ estimates had predicted an adjusted net loss of $0.06 per ADS so Alcatel missed that Street target, but revenues just edged out analyst estimates.

Alcatel's results were driven by 6% higher sales in the IP routing segment and a number of high-speed Internet backbone installations during the quarter. From a geographic point of view, North American sales soared nearly 20% higher year-over-year while China stayed flat and Latin American sales struggled.

Looking ahead, CEO Michel Combes expects accelerated cost savings on top of strong seasonal patterns in the year-ending quarter. "We are seeing the first positive signs of our new operating model in our day-to-day business," Combes said.

That optimistic note struck a chord with Alcatel investors: Alcatel shares opened 11% higher on the Euronext Paris market, and have only traded higher since then.

You can access Alcatel-Lucent's full results here, alongside the financial statements in a separate PDF download. Don't worry, these are the English versions of Alcatel's reports.

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