Journal Communications October Revenue Slips

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Media company Journal Communications Inc. said Thursday that revenue for its publishing and broadcast segments dipped 2.8 percent in October, as publishing ad sales declines continue to weigh on the industry.

The company publishes the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and 55 community newspapers and shoppers in Wisconsin and Florida. It owns and operates 35 radio stations and 12 television stations, and operates another under a local marketing agreement.

The publishing sector has continued to be squeezed as readers and advertisers increasingly migrate to the Internet. Companies have attempted to deal with the shift by cutting costs and ramping up Web operations. Softening economic conditions have also added to the industry’s troubles.

For the period ended Oct. 26, total publishing and broadcasting revenue fell to $38 million from $39.1 million.

Ad sales for the month slipped 3.8 percent to $32.5 million.

Revenue at the Journal Sentinel, the community newspapers and shoppers sagged 10.6 percent to $18.8 million as ad sales tumbled 15.4 percent to $13.2 million. Circulation revenue was flat at $4.1 million.

The Journal Sentinel reported a 17.4 percent drop in total ad revenue with the sharpest declines in help wanted, real estate/rentals and auto classified ad sales. Interactive ad revenue at the paper gained 2 percent to $1.3 million.

Radio and television station revenue rose 6.3 percent to $19.3 million. Television group revenue grew 11 percent on increased political and issue advertising, partly offset by weakness in its Ft. Myers, Fla., Boise, Idaho and Palm Springs, Calif. markets.

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