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VOL. 35 | NO. 28 | Friday, July 15, 2011




Gannett reports lower 2nd-quarter earnings

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NEW YORK (AP) — Gannett Co, the publisher of USA Today and more than 80 other daily newspapers, said Monday that its second quarter net income declined 23 percent, dragged down by lower ad revenue in its publishing segment.

Still, the nation's largest newspaper publisher said its results are showing improvement, and to show confidence in its business prospects, Gannett said it is resuming share buybacks and doubled its quarterly dividend.

So far, though, improvements in Gannett's digital and broadcast division have not been enough to overcome declines in its publishing business, which still relies mostly on print advertising.

Gannett said its net income fell to $151.5 million, or 62 cents per share, in the quarter ended June 26. That's down from $195.5 million, or 81 cents per share, at the same time last year.

Excluding one-time items, Gannett earned 58 cents per share. Analysts expected adjusted earnings of 57 cents a share.

The company says revenue slipped 2 percent to $1.33 billion. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected $1.34 billion.

Gannett said its company-wide digital revenue rose nearly 13 percent when compared with the year earlier, to 276.2 million. This consists of standalone digital businesses such as CareerBuilder.com, as well as digital revenue generated by other businesses, such as newspaper websites.

But, its publishing division's advertising revenue, which counts both print and digital and makes up about half of the company's total, fell nearly 7 percent to $646.9 million. Print advertising revenue has been shrinking at most major newspaper publishers as advertisers turn to free or cheaper alternatives online.

Revenue at Gannett's broadcasting segment up slightly to $184.4 million from $184 million. Last year's results were boosted by $11.7 million in political advertising that didn't happen this year.

Gannett recently announced it is laying off 700 workers to cope with the ongoing advertising slump. This amounts to 2 percent of the company's work force, Gannett's biggest round of cuts in two years.

Shares of Gannett, which is based in McLean, Va., climbed 7 cents to $13.55 in morning trading amid a broader market decline.

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