Gannett Earnings Rise 9% in 2nd Quarter

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(AP) Gannett Co., the largest newspaper publisher in the country, reported a 9% increase in second-quarter earnings Tuesday due largely to higher advertising revenues as well as acquisitions and favorable exchange rates.

The McLean, Va.-based company earned $354.4 million, or $1.30 a share, in the three months ending June 27, compared with $324.3 million, or $1.20 a share, in the comparable period a year ago. The results were in line with analysts’ estimates according to Thomson First Call.

Revenues for the period rose 10% to $1.87 billion from $1.71 billion.

Douglas McCorkindale, Gannett’s CEO, said in a statement that the company benefited from strong advertising growth, especially in help-wanted ads, as well as acquisitions. But he also cautioned that the company’s expenses continued to be affected by higher newsprint costs and certain employee benefits.

Gannett’s operations in the United Kingdom also contributed to the bottom line, including a benefit from a continued appreciation of the British pound against the dollar. Broadcasting revenues also benefited from political advertising as the election nears.

For the first six months of the year, Gannett earned $628.8 million, or $2.29 a share, up from $574.1 million, or $2.12 a share, a year ago. Six-month revenues rose 11% to $3.60 billion from $3.26 billion.

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