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Stock of Lee Enterprises, owner of the North County Times, is up almost 50% to $3.17 this morning (Sept. 29) on good news from Gannett, the largest newspaper chain. Lee stock has been as low as 24 cents within the last 52 weeks. Gannett estimated that its third quarter earnings will significantly top Wall Street's expectations. The news sent Gannett stock up 17.48% to $11.73. That stock has been as low as $1.85 in the last year. Other newspaper stocks are moving up in reaction.

However, newspaper stock upmoves could represent more Wall Street speculation. MediaPostNews reports that ad spending in local and national newspapers dropped more than 24% in the first half of this year.Martin Langeveld of the Nieman Journalism Lab thinks ad spending dropped close to 30% in the second quarter. It will drop 25% in the third quarter, he says. Newspaper ad spending this year will be down 43% from the peak of 2005, he says.

Meanwhile, a battle seems to be shaping up in San Francisco. Moneybags Warren Hellman plans to launch a locally focused online news operation there. The Wall Street Journal and New York Times plan to launch Bay Area editions featuring local news. According to SFAppeal.com, the metro editor of the San Francisco Chronicle sent a memo to her staff, claiming, "You are going to smash whomever is naive enough to poke their noses in our market." Sorry, the word is "whoever."

Comments
2

Does Lee still own Napp Systems of San Marcos? They supply press plates to many newspapers around the US. This may be a reflection of hope for a bottoming for newspapers in general, and not for Lee's own papers.

Sept. 29, 2009

Response to post #1: Lee sold Napp in 1996 to Polyfibron. Napp has since been sold to MacDermid Printing Solutions. Lee's move today sounds like crapshooting by gamblers in the market. Best, Don Bauder

Sept. 29, 2009

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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