Saturday, January 10, 2009

McClatchy reporter's story on financially-troubled companies facing delisting fails to mention his own employer

A McClatchy reporter in Raleigh who wrote a piece on the increasing number of companies getting booted off stock exchanges due to financial woes named several companies in his area facing delisting but left out a significant one -- his own employer.

Ranii David's piece on delisting is the big story on the business page in Saturday's News & Observer. He mentions two area companies that were delisted in 2008, then names several companies that have been cautioned they face delisting due to their stock price falling below $1 a share.

Ranii David conveniently -- and stupidly -- didn't mention McClatchy's struggle to avoid delisting.

McClatchy hasn't received an official notice from the New York Stock Exchange, but its stock price dipped below the $1 a share minimum for several days at the end of 2008, which triggered concerns McClatchy faced a real delisting threat. At the beginning of the year, though, MNI's share price rebounded to more than $1 per share, giving some relief.

Three newspaper companies (Sun-Times Media Group, Journal Register Co., and GateHouse Media) were delisted from the NYSE in 2008. Lee Enterprises was recently notified it faces delisting due to its share price falling under $1 a share.

So readers already know newspaper companies are troubled.

McClatchy, you need to be up front with readers. Don't insult them. Trust them with the full story about your business.
Hat tip: John in Carolina


Anonymous said...

I came across a bone chilling article. I believed buyouts were a good thing. If I read this information correctly, those receiving buyout payments are now creditors of the company, and in bankruptcy proceeding may be waiting in line for future payments. Even though I am not involved, I find this information stunning.
Recovering Journalist
Tribune's Victims

(Updated from an earlier version)
Even more troubling may be the status of those employees who left the company over the past year in the waves of buyouts that Tribune did to reduce employment.

According to The New York Times and The Washington Post, an [internal memo indicates that those ex-employees still receiving buyout payments are now creditors of the company and will
have to wait to get paid–if they get paid at all.] (Current employees, fortunately, are the most protected by law in a bankruptcy reorganization.)

DAS said...

Of all the troubled newspaper companies, the fall of the Journal Register Co. is the only one that upsets me.

It is a decent company with many 'fair and balanced' newspapers, The Trentonian being one.

The Trentonian, similar to the New York Post in its tabloid presentation, had a FABULOUS editorial writer David Neece (sp?) who didn't worship Clinton, or any PC politician, for that matter.

Unfortunately, The Trentonian didn't put its editorials online... so you had to buy the newspaper to read its brilliance.

Anonymous said...

Archer05 -- I don't think it's widely known that people who took buyouts wll have to get in line during bankrptcy proceedings -- and might not get paid at all.

Anonymous said...

First thing that struck me is typical McClatchy damage control...(Wag the dog)
Second thing...wouldn't put it past McClatchy to try a dirty little trick like that. They gave us our severance as a "bonus" and it was heavily taxed, but we did get a lump sum...more lumps than sums.

Anonymous said...

I find the prospect that buyout employees could be cheated out of their payments appalling. Could it be that offering these buyouts to perhaps have them erased in a bankruptcy proceeding, is a financial ploy?

Perhaps some of our experts have more information. I have a good friend that has taken a buyout. That would be devastating news, as he can’t find work. I would put nothing past McClatchy, NOTHING!

Anonymous said...

Funny how that works, but par for the course. Looking at others is their job. But looking inside?

Blind arrogance doesn’t permit a busy reporter that simple luxury. They are simply too busy changing the world to do that.

Besides, their McClatchy 401K statements won’t arrive till the end of the month.