(Adds shares and analyst poll comparison)
MEXICO CITY, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Mexican telecommunications company America Movil expects to increase its returns to shareholders when it meets its target for leverage, the company said on Wednesday, as shares fell after the company's performance fell short of analysts' estimates.
In a call with analysts, Chief Financial Officer Carlos Garcia Moreno said the company could reach its leverage target of 1.5 times EBITDA, a closely watched measure of profitability, as soon as the middle of next year.
America Movil, which is controlled by the family of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, reported a third-quarter net profit of 18.96 billion pesos ($1 billion) on Tuesday.
Analysts, however, expected a net profit of 22.6 billion pesos, according to a Reuters poll. Santander described the results as "weak" in a note to investors.
Shares of America Movil were down about 2.8 percent in early afternoon trading. (Reporting by Julia Love and Sheky Espejo; Editing by Daina Beth Solomon and Steve Orlofsky)