Newspaper Stocks Plunge With Sinking Dow

By: Mark Fitzgerald

Newspaper stocks, which had staged a remarkable rally that began almost exactly a year ago, tumbled again Tuesday along with a Dow alarmed at global and domestic economic news.

After several weeks of sell-offs, some newspaper sector stocks are now closer to their 52-week lows than the highs established in April. Stocks that had outpaced the Dow now fall farther than the index, which plunged 268 points Tuesday.

The New York Times Co. (NYT), for instance, closed Tuesday at $9.00 on a decline of 74 cents, or 7.6%. NYT is now trading nearer its 52-week low of $4.60 than its recently established high of $14.87.

Journal Communications (JRN) led the sector in percentage decline, closing at $3.99, off 45 cents, or 10.1%.

Media General Inc. (MEG) was close behind with a 9.8% fall as it shaved $1.08 from its open to end at $9.92.  The McClatchy Co. (MNI) was also down big, with a 7.8% decline on a 32-cent fall to $3.78.

Heavily traded Gannett Co. (GCI), the only newspaper stock in the S&P 500, was off 91 cents, or 6.1%, to $14.04.

The Washington Post Co. (WPO), which had risen as high as $547.58 in the past 52 weeks, closed Tuesday at $412.92 on a $14.04, or 3.3%, decline. WPO‘s 52-week low is $340.00.

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