By Fitzgerald, Mark
Editor & Publisher
The New York Times Co. on Thursday joined the band of newspaper publishers defying Wall Street expectations by posting second-quarter profits in the face of deteriorating advertising revenue.
The Times Co. said its second-quarter net income was $39.1 million, or 27 cents a share, compared to $21.1 million, or 15 cents a share in the year-ago period. In the first quarter of this year the Times Co. posted a loss of $74.5 million, and the consensus among analysts was that the company would post another loss, of about 4 cents a share, this quarter.
Profits were pumped up by a favorable tax adjustment that added 26 cents a share and some other special items, including a severance charge that cut the earnings by 11 cents a share.
But for investors wary of the newspaper sector the Times results are likely to be taken as more evidence that the newspaper industry is at or near the bottom of the steep fall-off in advertising.
Like Gannett Co., The McClatchy Co. and other chains who have already reported second-quarter results, the Times Co. said overall and ad revenue plunged by double-digit percentages.
Total revenue fell 21.2% from a year ago to $584.5 million -- and advertising revenue tumbled 30.2%.
Circulation revenue was up 1.5% on single-copy and home-delivery increases that stuck. …