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Newspaper publisher McClatchy's revenue drops 6.4%

Newspaper publisher McClatchy's revenue drops 6.4%
Forever on the downslide: Copies of the McClatchy Co owned Miami Herald newspaper are shown Wednesday, October 14, 2009 in Miami. Cost-cutting and a favourable tax adjustment lifted profits for newspaper publisher McClatchy Co, even as advertising revenue took a dive that displeased investors last week.

US newspaper publisher McClatchy Co has reported that second-quarter revenue fell 6.4 per cent, as advertising and circulation continue to suffer. The revenue decline, however, was an improvement from steep drops during the worst of the recession. It's also the latest sign that the weak advertising market that has hurt most media companies is slowly reviving.

Other newspaper publishers, including Gannett and The New York Times, also have reported recently that the ad erosion is easing. McClatchy is trying to adapt as readers and advertisers increasingly migrate to online news. And it remains burdened with heavy debt from its 2006 acquisition of the Knight-Ridder chain. As of June 30, the debt was $1.836 billion.

The Sacramento, California-based company is the parent of 30 daily newspapers, including The News & Observer, The Charlotte Observer and Miami Herald. It also owns 43 nondailies such as the Cary News and Chapel Hill News.

McClatchy's total revenue for the three months ended June 30 was $342 million. Ad revenue fell 8.2 per cent from a year earlier to $260.5 million. Circulation revenue was down 2.4 per cent.

"We continue to see signs of recovery," CEO Gary Pruitt said in a statement. "Notably, employment advertising, more than half of which is now online, was up 1.5 per cent in May and 0.8 per cent in June. In fact, May 2010 was the first month with growth in employment advertising revenue in four years. So while the economic recovery hasn't been robust or smooth, we believe it is beginning to spread across the markets we serve," he said.

Online revenue increased 0.6 per cent during the quarter. Net income fell to $7.3 million, or 9 cents per share, from $42.2 million, or 50 cents per share. The company slashed costs, and thousands of jobs, in recent years to offset weaker revenue.

Date posted: August 2, 2010 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 188