Scripps' Newspaper Segment Up Slightly in Q4

By: E&P Staff E.W. Scripps reported today that Q4 revenue for its newspaper division was $185 million, up 1.4% compared to the same period last year.

Kenneth Lowe, the Scripps president and CEO, said in a statement that ?revenue grew modestly during the quarter? for the newspaper division but that ?profits were held back by a combination of factors, including a stubbornly tepid newspaper advertising environment.?

Fourth-quarter profit for the newspaper division dropped 5.1% from a year ago, to $73.1 million. The company blamed soft advertising, higher employee-benefit costs, higher newsprint prices, expenses related to new-product development, and increased investment in sales and marketing for the decline.

Newspaper advertising revenue grew to $148 million for the quarter, up 2.5% over a year earlier. Local advertising was flat at $46.5 million; classified rose 1.6%, to $51.2 million; and national grew 4.1%, to $11.4 million.

Circulation revenue declined 3.7%, to $32.7 million.

Newsprint costs increased 8.2%.

The company's newspapers that are under joint operating agreements contributed $17.4 million to segment profit, up 14% since a year ago.

For the year, total revenue for the newspaper division grew 1.8% to $704 million. Profit declined 8.5% to $246 million.


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