MONROE, La., Nov. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- CenturyTel, Inc. (NYSE: CTL) announces operating results for third quarter 2007.

-- Operating revenues, excluding nonrecurring items, were $708.3 million compared to $619.2 million for third quarter 2006. Reported under GAAP, third quarter 2007 operating revenues were $708.8 million.

-- Net income, excluding nonrecurring items, was $108.1 million compared to $77.9 million in third quarter 2006. Reported under GAAP, third quarter 2007 net income was $113.2 million.

-- Diluted earnings per share, excluding nonrecurring items, was $.97 compared to $.66 in third quarter 2006. Reported under GAAP, third quarter 2007 diluted earnings per share was $1.01.

-- Free cash flow (as defined in the attached financial schedules), excluding nonrecurring items, was $167.3 million in third quarter 2007 compared to $125.5 million in third quarter 2006.

-- Under the recently approved $750 million share repurchase program, 786,000 shares were repurchased and retired for $36.4 million during the quarter.


     Third Quarter Highlights
     (Excluding nonrecurring items)
     (In thousands, except per share amounts and customer units)

                                      Quarter Ended   Quarter Ended   % Change
                                           9/30/07         9/30/06

     Operating Revenues                   $708,306        $619,186      14.4%
     Operating Cash Flow (1)              $363,005        $301,693      20.3%
     Net Income                           $108,137         $77,928      38.8%
     Diluted Earnings Per Share               $.97            $.66      47.0%
     Average Diluted Shares Outstanding   $112,229        $120,448      (6.8)%
     Capital Expenditures                  $77,445         $82,579      (6.2)%

     Access Lines (2)                    2,171,000       2,124,000       2.2%
     High-speed Internet Customers         530,000         340,000      55.9%


    (1) Operating Cash Flow is a non-GAAP financial measure. A reconciliation
        of this item to comparable GAAP measures is included in the attached
        financial schedules.
    (2) Quarter ended 9/30/2007 access lines and high-speed Internet customers
        include the effects of our April 2007 Madison River acquisition.
        Excluding the effects of this acquisition, access lines decreased 5.4%
        and high-speed Internet customers increased 38.8%.

"CenturyTel achieved over $167 million in free cash flow during the third quarter and we expect to generate record free cash flow for full year 2007," Glen F. Post, III, chairman and chief executive officer, said. "Nearly 40% year-over-year growth in high-speed Internet customers, the acquisition of the Madison River properties, and the recognition of access revenue settlements drove solid financial results for the quarter."

Operating revenues, excluding nonrecurring items, for third quarter 2007 were $708.3 million compared to $619.2 million in third quarter 2006. Revenue increases aggregating $106 million resulted primarily from $49 million in revenue contribution from the Madison River properties, $42 million related to adjustments to recognize prior period revenue settlements, and $15 million from an increase in high-speed Internet customers in our legacy markets. These increases more than offset revenue declines of $18 million attributable to lower access revenues and access line losses.

Operating expenses, excluding nonrecurring items, increased 7.7% to $481.9 million from $447.6 million in third quarter 2006, primarily due to operating costs associated with the Madison River properties acquired earlier this year. Excluding costs associated with the Madison River properties, operating expenses decreased in third quarter 2007 compared to third quarter 2006, primarily due to lower depreciation expense associated with fully depreciated assets, reduced personnel expenses and lower expenses under our amended satellite television agreement. These decreases more than offset an increase associated with growth in high-speed Internet customers.

Operating cash flow, excluding nonrecurring items, increased to $363.0 million from $301.7 million in third quarter 2006, primarily due to the recognition of prior period revenue settlements during third quarter 2007 and the contribution of the Madison River properties. For third quarter 2007, CenturyTel achieved an operating cash flow margin of 51.2% versus 48.7% in third quarter 2006.

"We remain focused on being the leading provider of broadband products and services to customers in our markets," Post said. "We added more than 29,000 broadband customers during the third quarter and ended the quarter with more than 29% penetration of broadband-enabled lines."

Net income, excluding nonrecurring items, was $108.1 million in third quarter 2007 compared to $77.9 million in third quarter 2006. This increase was primarily driven by the after-tax impact of the prior period revenue settlements discussed above. Diluted earnings per share, excluding nonrecurring items, was $.97 for third quarter 2007, a 47.0% increase from the $.66 reported in third quarter 2006. This increase was driven by the higher net income and a 6.8% decline in average diluted shares outstanding as a result of share repurchases since third quarter 2006.

For the first nine months of 2007, operating revenues, excluding nonrecurring items, increased to $1.948 billion from $1.838 billion for the same period in 2006. Operating cash flow, excluding nonrecurring items, was $970.1 million for the first nine months of 2007 compared to $896.5 million a year ago. Net income, excluding nonrecurring items, was $264.4 million in the first nine months of 2007 compared to $223.6 million during the same period in 2006. Diluted earnings per share, excluding nonrecurring items, was $2.34 during the first nine months of 2007 compared to $1.84 in the first nine months of 2006.

Under generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), net income for third quarter 2007 was $113.2 million compared to $76.3 million for third quarter 2006 and diluted earnings per share for third quarter 2007 was $1.01 compared to $.64 for third quarter 2006. Third quarter 2007 net income and diluted earnings per share reflect a net after-tax charge of $1.4 million ($.01 per share) related to a reduction in workforce during the quarter and a net after-tax gain of $6.4 million ($.06 per share) from the sale of a non- core asset. Third quarter 2006 net income and diluted earnings per share reflect a net after-tax charge of $1.6 million ($.01 per share) related to a reduction in workforce.

Net income under GAAP for the first nine months of 2007 was $303.3 million compared to $297.8 million for the first nine months of 2006 and diluted earnings per share for the first nine months of 2007 was $2.68 compared to $2.44 for the first nine months of 2006. See the accompanying financial schedules for detail of the Company's nonrecurring items for the nine months ended September 30, 2007 and 2006.

Outlook. For fourth quarter 2007, CenturyTel expects total revenues of $645 to $655 million and diluted earnings per share of $.66 to $.71. As a result of better than anticipated third quarter performance, the Company has increased and narrowed the range of anticipated full year 2007 diluted earnings per share guidance from $2.90 to $3.00 to $3.00 to $3.05.

CenturyTel expects to provide full year 2008 earnings per share guidance in February 2008. However, there are a couple of items that can be expected to affect 2008 results when compared to 2007. First, revenue settlements related to prior periods are anticipated to decline and negatively impact 2008 diluted earnings per share by $.22 to $.24. Additionally, lower Universal Service Fund receipts are expected to negatively impact 2008 diluted earnings by $.08 to $.10 per share. These and other items that may affect 2008 results will be further discussed during the Company's fourth quarter 2007 earnings call in February 2008.

All outlook figures provided under this section are presented excluding the potential impact of any future mergers, acquisitions or divestitures, any share repurchases after October 31, or other nonrecurring events.

Other. As previously reported, CenturyTel adopted the requirements of Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 108 (SAB 108) in fourth quarter 2006, which required the results of operations previously reported in the first, second and third quarters of 2006 to be adjusted. Third quarter 2006 and nine months ended September 30, 2006 amounts included in this press release reflect amounts adjusted for the application of SAB 108.

Reconciliation to GAAP. This release includes certain non-GAAP financial measures, including but not limited to operating cash flow, free cash flow and adjustments to GAAP measures to exclude the effect of nonrecurring items. In addition to providing key metrics for management to evaluate the Company's performance, we believe these measurements assist investors in their understanding of period-to-period operating performance and in identifying historical and prospective trends. Reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable GAAP measures are included in the attached financial schedules. Reconciliation of additional non-GAAP financial measures that may be discussed during the earnings call described below will be available in the Investor Relations portion of the Company's Web site at http://www.centurytel.com. Investors are urged to consider these non-GAAP measures in addition to, and not in substitution for, measures prepared in accordance with GAAP.

Investor Call. As previously announced, CenturyTel's management will host a conference call at 10:30 a.m. Central Time today. Interested parties can access the call by dialing 866.219.5631. The call will be accessible for replay through November 7, 2007, by calling 888.258.7854 and entering the access code: 1147641. Investors can also listen to CenturyTel's earnings conference call and replay by accessing the Investor Relations portion of the Company's Web site at http://www.centurytel.com through November 21, 2007.

In addition to historical information, this release includes certain forward-looking statements, estimates and projections that are based on current expectations only, and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. Actual events and results may differ materially from those anticipated, estimated or projected if one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if underlying assumptions prove incorrect. Factors that could affect actual results include but are not limited to: the timing, success and overall effects of competition from a wide variety of competitive providers; the risks inherent in rapid technological change; the effects of ongoing changes in the regulation of the communications industry; the Company's ability to effectively manage its expansion opportunities, including successfully integrating newly-acquired properties into the Company's operations and retaining and hiring key personnel; possible changes in the demand for, or pricing of, the Company's products and services; the Company's continued access to credit markets on favorable terms; the Company's ability to successfully introduce new product or service offerings on a timely and cost- effective basis; the Company's ability to collect its receivables from financially troubled communications companies; the Company's ability to successfully negotiate collective bargaining agreements on reasonable terms without work stoppages; the effect of adverse weather; other risks referenced from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"); and the effects of more general factors such as changes in interest rates, in tax rates, in accounting policies or practices, in operating, medical or administrative costs, in general market, labor or economic conditions, or in legislation, regulation or public policy. These and other uncertainties related to the Company's business are described in greater detail in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006, as updated by the Company's subsequent SEC reports. You should be aware that new factors may emerge from time to time and it is not possible for management to identify all such factors, nor can it predict the impact of each such factor on the business or the extent to which any one or more factors may cause actual results to differ from those reflected in any forward-looking statements. You are further cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release. The information contained in this release is as of November 1, 2007. The Company undertakes no obligation to update any of its forward- looking statements for any reason.

    CenturyTel (NYSE: CTL) is a leading provider of communications, high-speed
Internet and entertainment services in small-to-mid-size cities through our
broadband and fiber transport networks.  Included in the S&P 500 Index,
CenturyTel delivers advanced communications with a personal touch to customers
in 25 states.  Visit us at http://www.centurytel.com.



                                CenturyTel, Inc.
                        CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
                 THREE MONTHS ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2007 AND 2006
                                   (UNAUDITED)

                                         Three months ended September 30, 2007

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                          Less      excluding
                                                          non-        non-
     In thousands, except per share            As       recurring   recurring
     amounts                                reported     items        items

     OPERATING REVENUES
        Voice*                              $229,862                 229,862
        Network access                       248,490       527 (1)   247,963
        Data                                 134,630                 134,630
        Fiber transport and CLEC              41,811                  41,811
        Other*                                54,040                  54,040
                                             708,833       527       708,306

     OPERATING EXPENSES
        Cost of services and products        246,430     1,967 (1)   244,463
        Selling, general and administrative  101,612       774 (1)   100,838
        Depreciation and amortization        136,606                 136,606
                                             484,648     2,741       481,907

     OPERATING INCOME                        224,185    (2,214)      226,399

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
        Interest expense                     (55,176)                (55,176)
        Other income (expense)                14,761    10,437 (2)     4,324
        Income tax expense                   (70,568)   (3,158)(3)   (67,410)

     NET INCOME                             $113,202     5,065       108,137

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                  $1.04      0.05          0.99
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                $1.01      0.05          0.97

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
        Basic                                108,996                 108,996
        Diluted                              112,229                 112,229

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE               $0.0650                  0.0650



                                         Three months ended September 30, 2006

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                          Less      excluding
                                                          non-        non-
     In thousands, except per share            As      recurring    recurring
     amounts                                reported     items        items

     OPERATING REVENUES
        Voice*                               218,665                 218,665
        Network access                       219,897       560 (1)   219,337
        Data                                  91,473        91 (1)    91,382
        Fiber transport and CLEC              37,487                  37,487
        Other*                                52,315                  52,315
                                             619,837       651       619,186

     OPERATING EXPENSES
        Cost of services and products        226,536     3,092 (1)   223,444
        Selling, general and
         administrative                       94,212       163 (1)    94,049
        Depreciation and amortization        130,147                 130,147
                                             450,895     3,255       447,640

     OPERATING INCOME                        168,942    (2,604)      171,546

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
        Interest expense                     (47,857)                (47,857)
        Other income (expense)                 2,818                   2,818
        Income tax expense                   (47,579)    1,000 (3)   (48,579)

     NET INCOME                               76,324    (1,604)       77,928

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                   0.66     (0.01)         0.68
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                 0.64     (0.01)         0.66

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
        Basic                                115,221                 115,221
        Diluted                              120,448                 120,448

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE                0.0625                  0.0625


                                                                    Increase
                                                                   (decrease)
                                                    Increase       excluding
     In thousands, except per share                (decrease)    nonrecurring
     amounts                                      as reported         items

     OPERATING REVENUES
         Voice*                                        5.1%              5.1%
         Network access                               13.0%             13.1%
         Data                                         47.2%             47.3%
         Fiber transport and CLEC                     11.5%             11.5%
         Other*                                        3.3%              3.3%
                                                      14.4%             14.4%

     OPERATING EXPENSES
         Cost of services and products                 8.8%              9.4%
         Selling, general and administrative           7.9%              7.2%
         Depreciation and amortization                 5.0%              5.0%
                                                       7.5%              7.7%

     OPERATING INCOME                                 32.7%             32.0%

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
         Interest expense                             15.3%             15.3%
         Other income (expense)                      423.8%             53.4%
         Income tax expense                           48.3%             38.8%

     NET INCOME                                       48.3%             38.8%

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                         57.6%             45.6%
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                       57.8%             47.0%

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
         Basic                                        (5.4%)            (5.4%)
         Diluted                                      (6.8%)            (6.8%)

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE                         4.0%              4.0%


     NONRECURRING ITEMS
       (1)  -  Severance and related costs due to workforce reductions in
               third quarters of 2007 and 2006, including revenue impact.
       (2)  -  Gain on sale of non-core asset.
       (3)  -  Tax effect of above items.

    * Revenues from voice mail services previously reflected in "Other"
      revenues have been reclassified to "Voice" revenues for all periods.



                                CenturyTel, Inc.
                        CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
                  NINE MONTHS ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2007 AND 2006
                                   (UNAUDITED)

                                         Nine months ended September 30, 2007

                                                                  As adjusted
                                                         Less      excluding
                                                         non-         non-
     In thousands, except per share            As      recurring   recurring
     amounts                                reported    items        items

     OPERATING REVENUES
        Voice*                              $664,435                 664,435
        Network access                       726,091   49,514 (1)    676,577
        Data                                 338,700                 338,700
        Fiber transport and CLEC             120,851       13 (1)    120,838
        Other*                               149,602    1,869 (2)    147,733
                                           1,999,679   51,396      1,948,283

     OPERATING EXPENSES
        Cost of services and products        686,349   (2,085)(3)    688,434
        Selling, general and
         administrative                      290,525      774 (3)    289,751
        Depreciation and amortization        398,701                 398,701
                                           1,375,575   (1,311)     1,376,886

     OPERATING INCOME                        624,104   52,707        571,397

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
        Interest expense                    (159,804)               (159,804)
        Other income (expense)                28,131   10,437 (4)     17,694
        Income tax expense                  (189,094) (24,248)(5)   (164,846)

     NET INCOME                             $303,337   38,896        264,441

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                  $2.77     0.36           2.41
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                $2.68     0.34           2.34

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
        Basic                                109,478                 109,478
        Diluted                              114,086                 114,086

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE               $0.1950                  0.1950



                                         Nine months ended September 30, 2006

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                         Less       excluding
                                                         non-          non-
     In thousands, except per share            As      recurring    recurring
     amounts                                reported    items         items

     OPERATING REVENUES
        Voice*                               657,559                  657,559
        Network access                       666,883     1,688 (6)    665,195
        Data                                 259,158       275 (6)    258,883
        Fiber transport and CLEC             109,318                  109,318
        Other*                               147,117                  147,117
                                           1,840,035     1,963      1,838,072

     OPERATING EXPENSES
        Cost of services and products        665,282     8,585 (6)    656,697
        Selling, general and administrative  285,748       845 (6)    284,903
        Depreciation and amortization        397,146                  397,146
                                           1,348,176     9,430      1,338,746

     OPERATING INCOME                        491,859    (7,467)       499,326

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
        Interest expense                    (148,582)                (148,582)
        Other income (expense)               130,874   118,649 (7)     12,225
        Income tax expense                  (176,357)  (36,976)(8)   (139,381)

     NET INCOME                              297,794    74,206        223,588

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                   2.53      0.63           1.90
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                 2.44      0.60           1.84

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
        Basic                                117,685                  117,685
        Diluted                              123,348                  123,348

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE                0.1875                   0.1875



                                                                    Increase
                                                                   (decrease)
                                                    Increase        excluding
     In thousands, except per share                (decrease)     nonrecurring
     amounts                                      as reported        items

     OPERATING REVENUES
         Voice*                                        1.0%              1.0%
         Network access                                8.9%              1.7%
         Data                                         30.7%             30.8%
         Fiber transport and CLEC                     10.5%             10.5%
         Other*                                        1.7%              0.4%
                                                       8.7%              6.0%

     OPERATING EXPENSES
         Cost of services and products                 3.2%              4.8%
         Selling, general and administrative           1.7%              1.7%
         Depreciation and amortization                 0.4%              0.4%
                                                       2.0%              2.8%

     OPERATING INCOME                                 26.9%             14.4%

     OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
         Interest expense                              7.6%              7.6%
         Other income (expense)                      (78.5%)            44.7%
         Income tax expense                            7.2%             18.3%

     NET INCOME                                        1.9%             18.3%

     BASIC EARNINGS PER SHARE                          9.5%             26.8%
     DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE                        9.8%             27.2%

     AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING
         Basic                                        (7.0%)            (7.0%)
         Diluted                                      (7.5%)            (7.5%)

    DIVIDENDS PER COMMON SHARE                         4.0%              4.0%


     NONRECURRING ITEMS
       (1) -  Revenue recorded upon settlement of a dispute with a carrier
              ($49.0 million) and revenue impact of severance and related
              costs due to workforce reductions ($.5 million).
       (2) -  Reimbursement of amounts upon a change in our satellite
              television arrangement.
       (3) -  Severance and related costs due to workforce reductions
              ($2.7 million), net of reimbursement of amounts upon a change in
              our satellite television arrangement ($4.1 million).
       (4) -  Gain on sale of non-core asset.
       (5) -  Tax effects of items (1) through (4).
       (6) -  Severance and related costs due to workforce reduction,
              including revenue impact.
       (7) -  Includes gain recorded upon redemption of Rural Telephone
              Bank stock ($117.8 million) and gain recorded upon sale of
              Arizona properties ($.9 million).
       (8) -  Includes $43.4 million net tax expense related to Items (6)
              and (7), net of $6.4 million net tax benefit due to the
              resolution of various income tax audit issues.

    * Revenues from voice mail services previously reflected in "Other"
      revenues have been reclassified to "Voice" revenues for all periods.



                                  CenturyTel, Inc.
                             CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
                      SEPTEMBER 30, 2007 AND DECEMBER 31, 2006
                                     (UNAUDITED)

                                                September 30,     December 31,
                                                    2007               2006
                                                       (in thousands)
                     ASSETS
    CURRENT ASSETS
        Cash and cash equivalents                 $58,714             25,668
        Other current assets                      269,166            264,449
           Total current assets                   327,880            290,117

    NET PROPERTY, PLANT AND EQUIPMENT
        Property, plant and equipment           8,598,777          7,893,760
        Accumulated depreciation               (5,453,958)        (4,784,483)
           Net property, plant and equipment    3,144,819          3,109,277

    GOODWILL AND OTHER ASSETS
        Goodwill                                3,997,028          3,431,136
        Other                                     762,923            610,477
            Total goodwill and other assets     4,759,951          4,041,613


    TOTAL ASSETS                               $8,232,650          7,441,007


     LIABILITIES AND EQUITY CURRENT LIABILITIES
        Short-term debt and current
         maturities of long-term debt            $254,895            178,012
        Other current liabilities                 425,021            439,553
            Total current liabilities             679,916            617,565

    LONG-TERM DEBT                              2,747,576          2,412,852
    DEFERRED CREDITS AND OTHER
     LIABILITIES                                1,440,737          1,219,639
    STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY                        3,364,421          3,190,951

    TOTAL LIABILITIES AND EQUITY               $8,232,650          7,441,007



                                 CenturyTel, Inc.
                  RECONCILIATION OF NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURES
                                   (UNAUDITED)

                                         Three months ended September 30, 2007

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                         Less       excluding
                                                         non-         non-
     In thousands                              As      recurring    recurring
                                            reported     items        items
     Operating cash flow and cash flow
      margin
       Operating income                     $224,185    (2,214)(1)   226,399
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization   136,606         -       136,606
       Operating cash flow                  $360,791    (2,214)      363,005

       Revenues                             $708,833       527 (1)   708,306

       Operating income margin (operating
        income divided by revenues)            31.6%                   32.0%

       Operating cash flow margin
        (operating cash flow divided by
        revenues)                              50.9%                   51.2%


     Free cash flow (prior to debt
      service requirements and dividends)
       Net income                           $113,202     5,065 (2)   108,137
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization   136,606         -       136,606
       Less:  Capital expenditures           (77,445)        -       (77,445)
       Free cash flow                       $172,363     5,065       167,298

       Free cash flow                       $172,363
       Gain on asset dispositions            (10,436)
       Deferred income taxes                  13,106
       Changes in current assets and
        current liabilities                  (42,321)
       Increase in other noncurrent
        assets                                 4,400
       Decrease in other noncurrent
        liabilities                           (2,542)
       Retirement benefits                     6,745
       Excess tax benefits from share-
        based compensation                      (122)
       Other, net                             12,770
       Add:  Capital expenditures             77,445
       Net cash provided by operating
        activities                          $231,408



                                         Three months ended September 30, 2006

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                         Less       excluding
                                                         non-         non-
     In thousands                              As      recurring    recurring
                                            reported     items        items
     Operating cash flow and cash flow
      margin
       Operating income                      168,942    (2,604)(1)   171,546
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization   130,147                 130,147
       Operating cash flow                   299,089    (2,604)      301,693

       Revenues                              619,837       651 (1)   619,186

       Operating income margin (operating
        income divided by revenues)            27.3%                   27.7%

       Operating cash flow margin
        (operating cash flow divided by
        revenues)                              48.3%                   48.7%


     Free cash flow (prior to debt
      service requirements and dividends)
       Net income                             76,324    (1,604)(3)    77,928
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization   130,147         -       130,147
       Less:  Capital expenditures           (82,579)        -       (82,579)
       Free cash flow                        123,892    (1,604)      125,496

       Free cash flow                        123,892
       Gain on asset dispositions                  -
       Deferred income taxes                  11,262
       Changes in current assets and
        current liabilities                  (14,012)
       Increase in other noncurrent
        assets                                 4,132
       Decrease in other noncurrent
        liabilities                           (1,729)
       Retirement benefits                    10,406
       Excess tax benefits from share-
        based compensation                    (2,913)
       Other, net                              2,574
       Add:  Capital expenditures             82,579
       Net cash provided by operating
        activities                           216,191



     NONRECURRING ITEMS
       (1)  -  Severance and related costs due to workforce reduction,
               including revenue impact (presented on a pre-tax basis).
       (2)  -  After-tax effect of gain on sale of non-core asset and
               severance and related costs due to workforce reduction.
       (3)  -  After-tax effect of severance and related costs due to
               workforce reduction.



                                 CenturyTel, Inc.
                  RECONCILIATION OF NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURES
                                   (UNAUDITED)

                                         Nine months ended September 30, 2007

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                         Less       excluding
                                                         non-          non-
     In thousands                               As     recurring    recurring
                                             reported    items        items
     Operating cash flow and cash flow
      margin
       Operating income                      $624,104   52,707 (1)    571,397
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization    398,701        -        398,701
       Operating cash flow                 $1,022,805   52,707        970,098

       Revenues                            $1,999,679   51,396 (2)  1,948,283

       Operating income margin (operating
        income divided by revenues)             31.2%                   29.3%

       Operating cash flow margin
        (operating cash flow divided by
        revenues)                               51.1%                   49.8%


     Free cash flow (prior to debt
      service requirements and dividends)
       Net income                            $303,337   38,896 (3)    264,441
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization    398,701        -        398,701
       Less:  Capital expenditures           (184,301)       -       (184,301)
       Free cash flow                        $517,737   38,896        478,841

       Free cash flow                        $517,737
       Gain on asset dispositions             (10,436)
       Deferred income taxes                   43,111
       Changes in current assets and
        current liabilities                    28,514
       Decrease in other noncurrent
        assets                                  8,053
       Increase (decrease) in other
        noncurrent liabilities                (14,209)
       Retirement benefits                     21,392
       Excess tax benefits from share-
        based compensation                     (6,434)
       Other, net                              17,404
       Add:  Capital expenditures             184,301
       Net cash provided by operating
        activities                           $789,433


                                          Nine months ended September 30, 2006

                                                                   As adjusted
                                                         Less       excluding
                                                         non-          non-
     In thousands                               As     recurring    recurring
                                             reported    items        items
     Operating cash flow and cash flow
      margin
       Operating income                       491,859   (7,467)(4)   499,326
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization    397,146                397,146
       Operating cash flow                    889,005   (7,467)      896,472

       Revenues                             1,840,035    1,963 (4) 1,838,072

       Operating income margin (operating
        income divided by revenues)             26.7%                  27.2%

       Operating cash flow margin
        (operating cash flow divided by
        revenues)                               48.3%                  48.8%


     Free cash flow (prior to debt service
      requirements and dividends)
       Net income                             297,794   74,206 (5)   223,588
       Add:  Depreciation and amortization    397,146                397,146
       Less:  Capital expenditures           (213,034)              (213,034)
       Free cash flow                         481,906   74,206       407,700

       Free cash flow                         481,906
       Gain on asset dispositions            (118,649)
       Deferred income taxes                   33,413
       Changes in current assets and
        current liabilities                   (14,472)
       Decrease in other noncurrent assets      4,429
       Increase (decrease) in other
        noncurrent liabilities                    557
       Retirement benefits                     25,332
       Excess tax benefits from share-
        based compensation                     (7,860)
       Other, net                               4,818
       Add:  Capital expenditures             213,034
       Net cash provided by operating
        activities                            622,508

     NONRECURRING ITEMS
       (1)  -  Includes (i) $49.0 million revenue recorded upon settlement of
               a dispute with a carrier; (ii) $5.9 million reimbursement of
               amounts upon a change in our satellite television arrangement,
               net of (iii) impact of severance and related costs due to
               workforce reduction ($2.2 million).
       (2)  -  Includes (i) $49.0 million revenue recorded upon settlement of
               a dispute with a carrier; (ii) $1.9 million reimbursement of
               amounts upon a change in our satellite television arrangement
               and (iii) revenue impact of severance and related costs due
               to workforce reduction ($.5 million).
       (3)  -  Includes after-tax gain on sale of non-core asset and the
               after-tax effect of Item (1).
       (4)  -  Severance and related costs due to workforce reduction,
               including related revenue impact.
       (5)  -  Includes (i) the after-tax effect of gains on sales of assets
               (primarily gain on Rural Telephone Bank stock redemption),
               (ii) the after-tax effect of Item (4) and (iii) a $6.4 million
               net tax benefit due to the resolution of various income tax
               audit issues.

SOURCE CenturyTel, Inc.