Journal earnings dip on fewer political ads

Milwaukee-based Journal Communications Inc. today reported fourth quarter net earnings of $11.3 million, or 22 cents per share, down from $15.1 million, or 30 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

Total revenue for the fourth quarter was $107.4 million, down from $122.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2012.

For the full year, net earnings were $26.2 million, or 52 cents per share, down from $33.3 million, or 61 cents per share, in 2012.
Total 2013 revenue was $397.3 million, up from $393.1 million in 2012.

The increase in yearly revenue was driven by the acquisition of Nashville NewsChannel 5 in December 2012.

Both quarterly and full-year results were also impacted by an additional week in 2012 compared to 2013.

“Journal Communications delivered a solid fourth quarter in a non-political year, driven by gains in core revenue in our broadcast group and improving advertising revenue trends in publishing. Revenue from NewsChannel 5 in Nashville, acquired in December 2012, helped us replace some of the record political advertising dollars we recorded in the fourth quarter last year. Consolidated revenue of $107.4 million was up 11 percent compared to 2012, excluding the extra week and political revenue in 2012,” said Steven J. Smith, chairman and chief executive officer of Journal Communications.

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