New York Times Co., Gannett Shares Swoon On ?Sell,? ?Hold? Ratings

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By: Mark Fitzgerald

Shares of The New York Times Co. (NYT) are down more than 5% in mid-afternoon trading Tuesday after UBS initiated coverage of the publisher with analyst John Janedis issuing a “Sell” rating in a note to investors. 

“We think the cyclical recovery in newspaper advertising has somewhat obscured the reality that in a more normalized ad environment, newspapers will still witness declines in ad growth,” he wrote. “With improvements in ad growth flattening, and likely reversing, we expect consensus estimates to move lower as the industry struggles to cut costs in an attempt to manage flat cash flow growth on an annual basis.”

With about two hours of trading left Tuesday, NYT was at $8.01, down 43 cents, or 5.1%, from the open. NYT has traded in a 52-week range of $7.06 to $14.87.

UBS also initiated coverage of Gannett Co. (GCI), which Janedis rated a “Hold,” saying the stock, which has stayed closer to its post-recession highs than its peers, was likely to “tread water.”

GCI at mid-afternoon was trading at $13.07, down 43 cents, or 3.2%. GCI’s 52-week range is $9.16 to $19.69. 

Janedis rated Gannett as a Hold, saying the company’s stock is likely to “tread water.”

Times shares opened at $8.35, 9 cents below yesterday’s closing price of $8.44. Shares dropped to as low as $8.12 this morning, and are currently down almost 3.5% to $8.15.

Gannett shares are down about 3.2% to around $13.00.

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