GTE Announces Continued Strong Dividend Payment And Share Repurchase Program

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IRVING, Texas -- GTE's Board of Directors today declared a regular quarterly common stock dividend of 47 cents per share. The dividend is payable on October 1, 1999 to GTE shareholders of record as of August 23, 1999, and is GTE's 253rd consecutive dividend. There are approximately 981 million shares outstanding. The annualized rate of $1.88 per share is unchanged.

GTE also announced that it intends to initiate share repurchases under a program whose principal purpose will be to offset shares issued under the company's employee-benefit and dividend-reinvestment programs. The program, which was previously approved by the GTE Board of Directors, includes the repurchase of up to 26 million shares of the company's currently issued common stock. Purchases will occur in the open market from time to time until the closing of GTE's pending merger with Bell Atlantic Corporation, depending upon market conditions and the company's needs.

With 1998 revenues of more than $25 billion, GTE is a leading telecommunications provider with one of the industry's broadest arrays of products and services. In the United States, GTE provides local service in 28 states and wireless service in 17 states, as well as nationwide long-distance service and internetworking services ranging from dial-up Internet access for residential and small business consumers to Web-based applications for Fortune 500 companies. Outside the United States, the company serves customers on five continents. Additional information about GTE can be obtained at www.gte.com.

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