Journal Communications Reports Q2 Profits

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(AP) Journal Communications Inc. reported second-quarter earnings of $13.9 million, down 16.8% from the $16.7 million earned in the same period in 2002.

The company, which publishes the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and runs television and radio stations among other businesses, released the information Wednesday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Journal Communications said its operating earnings dropped 27.1% to $24.2 million from $33.2 million. Revenue was $185 million, compared with $186 million in the second quarter of 2002.

The company said several factors contributed to the decline in operating earnings.

Journal Communications said it had a one-time positive earnings impact in 2002 of $4.1 million related to litigation, and recorded a $2.1 million liability for employment taxes in the latest quarter.

It said other factors were costs related to a new printing and distribution plant and shrinking profits in telecommunications.

The company, which is owned by its employees, said it had experienced a significant increase in wholesale telecommunications customers disconnecting or terminating service.

The company also said it expected disconnections and price reductions in the business would “cause an increasing downward trend that could result in a significant decrease in our telecommunications operating earnings during 2003.”

Journal Communications said telecommunications accounted for 36.8% of the company’s operating earnings during the second quarter.

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