Summary Box: Sprint’s third-quarter results

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WHAT’S WORKING: Sprint Nextel Corp. posted third-quarter revenue that was up slightly from a year ago, an improvement after years of losses. It also posted a net subscriber gain for the second straight quarter, also a reversal of a long trend.

WHAT ISN’T: Sprint’s net loss widened, due to tax effects and the subsidies it pays for smart phones, which are a big part of the reason its subscriber trends are improving. It’s also saddled with supporting three different networks, pushing up its costs.

INVESTOR REACTION: Sprint shares dived Wednesday, giving up two months of gains.

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