Wednesday, May 6, 2009

McClatchy's largest shareholder, Ariel Investments, unloads 15 million shares of McClatchy stock *** corrected: Ariel still has 9 million shares

UPDATED: Fitz and Jen noted 5/11/09 that Ariel retains nearly 9 million shares of MNI... what follows below is my post erroneously stating Ariel had unloaded all its MNI shares. (Also see here.)

A reader posted a comment Tuesday advising that Ariel Investments, the largest institutional holder of McClatchy stock, completely unloaded its interest in McClatchy stock last quarter. I did some checking and sure enough, I found confirmation on the company's web site:

"During the quarter... we exited our position in McClatchy Co. (NYSE: MNI) because its market capitalization fell below the range we prefer for the fund."

That's a big blow to McClatchy. As of the end of the previous quarter, Ariel owned a whopping 15,220,631 shares of MNI, making it by far MNI's biggest shareholder. The 2nd-largest shareholder at the end of last quarter was Chou Associates Management, which owned a piddly 5,571,077 shares.

I guess Ariel decided Gannett was a better investment -- a few weeks ago Ariel more than doubled its holdings in Gannett.

UPDATE: A reader says Ariel actually unloaded over 20 million shares when you include 5 million MNI shares in a small mutual fund Ariel also dumped.

Hat tip: comments


Anonymous said...

Actually it was over 20 million shares because Ariel Funds (the small cap mutual fund that they have) had an additional 5 or 6 million shares that were also unloaded. Those shares were not listed under institutional holdings. They were separate.

Anonymous said...

So what took them so long? Were they waiting for the buyout that never came?

Anonymous said...


GM Shareholders: Poof!

You didn't/don't hold the stock, did you?

If so, I hope you sell tomorrow, assuming it opens over 2 cents/share.


No really, I'm not kidding.

In a filing with the SEC late this afternoon it was disclosed that the GM "restructuring" would:

Increase the number of authorized shares to 62 billion (!) Reduce the par value to one cent. Effect a 100:1 reverse split for the existing shareholders.

Anonymous said...

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!

Anonymous said...

Bravo, I have no idea which blog you belong on, but it isn't this one.

But do try the free methadone clinic in your own town for starters.

Anonymous said...

So what took them so long? Were they waiting for the buyout that never came?

The Chairman and CEO said it himself. They were completely wrong about newspapers and then went on to say that they should not be condemned as they believe that they are still competent to judge media stocks. (Even though they lost no less that 750% on the deal)

Then to everyone's surprise they determined that Ganett still had adequate capitalization to stay solvent until 2011 and doubled down on those holdings. Go Figure, but now you know why Ariel has a 1 star rating from MorningStar.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:08 Thanks for translating and making it clear!