This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Soft Quarter at Tribune

Updated from 9:45 a.m.

Tribune (TRB) posted a drop in second-quarter earnings as circulation at the newspaper company continues to slide.

The Chicago-based company made $164 million, or 53 cents a share, from continuing operations for its quarter ended June 25. That's down from the year-ago continuing operations profit of $231 million, or 72 cents a share.

The latest quarter included a penny-a-share tax gain and a 3-cent nonoperating loss. Excluding those items, latest-quarter earnings were 55 cents a share, a penny shy of the Thomson Financial forecast.

Revenue fell 1.4% from a year ago to $1.43 billion, short of the $1.46 billion consensus estimate.

"With the successful completion of the tender offer, our leveraged recapitalization is on track," said CEO Dennis FitzSimons. "We are moving aggressively with additional divestitures of noncore assets.

"In publishing, the competitive environment in our larger markets is still challenging, but we saw good growth in the second quarter at many of our medium-sized markets like Orlando and South Florida," the CEO said. "Interactive revenues, the fastest growing segment of our business, were up 27% this quarter. In television, our stations in Los Angeles, Seattle, Indianapolis and Sacramento were our top performers."

Advertising revenue was flat for the quarter. Excluding Newsday, advertising revenue rose 2%. National advertising revenue fell 7%, with decreases in movies, autos, resorts and technology, partially offset by increases in health care, media, financial and transportation.

Circulation revenue slid 5%. Individually paid circulation for Tribune's 11 metro newspapers averaged 2.7 million copies daily, down about 2% from the same reporting period in 2005, and 4.1 million copies Sunday, down about 2.5% from the same reporting period in 2005.

The issue of the dissident 12.5% shareholder the Chandler family trusts was not raised until well into Thursday's earnings call. The Chandlers loudly objected to Tribune's Dutch auction and repurchase program and are calling for a split of the company along asset lines.

FitzSimons said Thursday that the tender offer has been completed and management looks forward to "do something there that makes sense for both sides and all shareholders." While he indicated that he hoped to move forward constructively on the issue, he declined to comment on any negotiations.

Probed about divestitures and whether Tribune would consider going beyond its current committment to shed $500 million in assets, FitzSimons said the company will "look for situations where if we don't have a competitive advantage." He implied that the $500 million benchmark could be surpassed if the company sold a reasonably large asset.

Tribune says it has completed $300 million of divestitures since announcing the program. It has recently sold TV stations in Atlanta and in Albany, N.Y.

Shares fell 68 cents Thursday to $31.67.

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,168.10 -111.64 -0.65%
S&P 500 1,993.88 -16.52 -0.82%
NASDAQ 4,518.1720 -61.6170 -1.35%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs