Don Bauder 5:30 p.m., March 10
Most Newspaper Chains' Stocks Down At Least 90% in Last Year
Here's how much the market has knocked down newspaper stocks in the last 52 weeks. I picked 10 representative newspaper stocks; half of them are significantly diversified into other media. The list includes the cream from a quality standpoint: Washington Post, NY Times, etc. During the last 52 weeks, the Standard & Poor's 500 has gone down 46.55%. Seven of the ten newspaper stocks have gone down more than 90%. Here they are, with stock performance over the last year: Gannett (the largest chain, whose bonds were downgraded to junk this week) down 92.04%; E.W. Scripps down 99.28%; McClatchy down 95.59%; Lee down 96.9%; Media General down 90.05%; GateHouse Media down 98.61%; AH Belo down 92.92%; News Corp. (Murdoch's company, including Dow Jones) down 63.8%; New York Times down 76.72%, and Washington Post down 52.82%. It could be overkill -- but what will be the societal effects if it isn't?