Tuesday, November 16, 2010

7 Reasons Newspapers Are Not Rebounding Financially

This was to be a year of convalescence for newspapers, not a total recovery but a dramatic improvement on the dismal results of 2008 and 2009. However, Rick Edmonds at Poynter online writes with third-quarter earnings in and just seven weeks left in 2010, the industry's vital signs are distinctly mixed.

The good news first. Newspapers are solvent and profitable, often quite profitable on an operating basis. Only a handful went out of business during the great recession. Newspaper companies now are generating enough cash to pay down debt and finance robust exploration of potential new digital revenue streams.

But Edmonds  sees at least seven signs of continuing trouble in the near term and a bumpy path to the mythical "new business model."
1. Advertising revenues are still falling.
2. Online and other digital growth doesn't take up the slack.
3. Newsprint prices are rising again.
4. Other cost reductions are cycling through.
5. Circulation revenues have gone flat.
6. The "death spiral" cycle continues.
7. Debt continues to be problematic.
Read more here.

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