American Management Systems Inc. of Fairfax reported a 62 percent drop in second-quarter earnings, to $4.6 million (10 cents a share) from $12 million (28 cents). Revenue in the period rose 22 percent, to $305 million from $251 million.

The earnings for the most recent quarter were affected by an after-tax provision of $11.8 million to cover ongoing disputes on a contract between an AMS subsidiary and Bezeq, the Israeli telephone company. "This reserve puts the last of the 1996-97 telecom problems behind us and enables all of us to focus on profitable projects," Paul A. Brands, AMS chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.

AMS is one of the 20 largest information technology consulting firms in the world. The company's stock price fell $1.50, to $28.50 a share, on the Nasdaq Stock Market.

Freddie Mac, the nation's second-largest provider of mortgage funding, said its earnings increased 33 percent in the second quarter, largely from a gain in interest income on home loans the company buys and keeps in its portfolio.

The Reston-based company said that earnings were $552 million (74 cents a share), compared with earnings of $414 million (56 cents) for the second quarter of 1998.

The company said earnings were $1.07 billion ($1.42) for the first six months of 1999, compared with $807 million ($1.10) for the first six months of 1998.

Freddie Mac is a government-sponsored enterprise that buys mortgages from banks and other lenders and packages the loans into mortgage-backed securities or holds them in its own portfolio. The agency's stock price closed at $59.25 a share, down $1.87 1/2, on the New York Stock Exchange.

Life Technologies Inc., a leading manufacturer and supplier of life sciences research products, reported that its second-quarter earnings grew to $9.8 million (39 cents a share), up from $9.4 million (39 cents) in the same quarter of last year.

The Rockville-based company's second-quarter revenue rose 9 percent, to $99.8 million from $91.5 million for the same period in 1998.

For the first six months of 1999, the company, which supplies biological products that laboratories, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies and government researchers use to manipulate the genetic codes of cells, earned $20.2 million (81 cents), up 12 percent from $18.1 million (75 cents a share) for the first half of 1998.

The company said quarterly earnings were below its goal because of increased legal expenses and expenditures related to the completion of the last major phase of its management information system conversion, and by planned operation losses at its newly acquired chromotography and research products business.

Life Technologies stock was unchanged at $38 in over-the-counter trading.

Owens & Minor Inc., the nation's largest distributor of national name brand medical and surgical supplies, reported earnings of $6.5 million (19 cents a share) in the second quarter, up from $145,000 (1 cent) for the year-earlier period.

The Richmond-based company attributed last year's depressed earnings to a restructuring charge related to the loss of a contract with Columbia HCA.

Net sales declined 3.3 percent in the second quarter of 1999 compared with the same quarter a year ago. The net sales decline is attributed to a loss of a contract with Columbia HCA last year.

For the first six months of 1999, the company earned $12 million (36 cents), up 71.4 percent from $7 million (15 cents) for the same period last year. The company's stock price closed at $10.75, up 25 cents, on the New York Stock Exchange.