Investors propped up



on Thursday, a day after the company said consolidated revenue in February fell 5% from the year-ago period and warned that it wouldn't meet analysts' first quarter-expectations based on the lackluster performance of the first two months of the year.

Shares of Tribune gained $1.50, or 4.1%, to $37.70 in recent

New York Stock Exchange


For the four weeks ended March 4, Tribune posted consolidated revenue of $399 million, down 5% from $422 million in the same period, one year ago.

The company expects to earn 18 cents to 20 cents a diluted share, excluding nonoperating items, for the first quarter. Twelve analysts surveryed by

Thomson Financial/First Call

expect the company, which is based in Chicago, to earn 25 cents a share. The company earned 32 cents a share in the year-ago period.

Tribune expects to achieve double-digit growth in earnings and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization for 2001 and said it believes advertising revenue will be stronger in the second half of the year.

Tribune's revenue decline and earnings warning follows similar announcements from rival publishers




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