Monday, June 1, 2009

"Worst quarter in modern American history" -- newspaper ad sales fall 28.3%

Alan Mutter reports newspaper ad sales fell by an unprecedented 28.3% in the first three months of 2009, a fall of more than $2.6 billion from the prior year.

Here is a breakdown of the first quarter of 2009 compared to the previous year:
  • Employment classified advertising dropped 67.4% to $205.4 million.
  • Real estate classified advertising slumped 45.6% to $336.9 million.
  • Automotive classified advertising fell 43.4% to $332.8 million.
  • National advertising slipped 25.9% to $1.1 billion.
  • Retail advertising was down 23.7% to $3.3 billion.
  • Other classified advertising slid 16.5% to $587.7 million.
Mutter points out the drop in ad sales is due to the slow economy but also to a secular change in how advertisers spend ad dollars. The chart below shows quarterly ad sales since 2006.



Anonymous said...

Sorry guys ,but no company can survive this kind of revenue loss. No matter how financially sound you think your company is

Anonymous said...

Just curious, but couldn't they quantify "what" lost money?

I mean, to compare year over year, who lost the most of the nearly 30% drop in print ads. Was it classifieds, jobs, real estate?

Sure a drop is a drop is bad, but depending on what dropped, and for what reason things could improve.

For instance, was the bulk in classifieds? If so there is likely no rebound as there are other sources for them.

Was the bulk in jobs/real estate? Well, if so, then likely once the economy rebounds the ad sales should pick back up.

Regardless MNI has planned for a year over year drop of 30% through the end of 2009. That means that Q4 2009 would essentially be a 2 year decline of 50% when you factor in Q4 2008 as well.

Anything less than 30% is good, anything more is bad.

Anonymous said...

Notice the declines accelerated after Democrats stole Congress back in Nov'06.

Anonymous said...

That isn't fair. The whole economy started to tank after we took control of congress! Er..hmmm...well, you know what I mean!

Anonymous said...

"Sure a drop is a drop is bad, but depending on what dropped, and for what reason things could improve."

You give a whole new definition to the word, "optimist."

Stay in newspapers. Anywhere else you'll be sued into oblivion or charged with malpractice.

Anonymous said...

Hello! This is not news to anybody. It was projected months ago. MNI budgeted for revenue to be off 30+% year over year starting in 2Q for the rest of the year. That's what all the layoffs and content cuts were for, duh. It's called restructuring.

Anonymous said...

From AJR, April/May 2009
Hunkering Down

June/July preview» Despite the massive economic problems plaguing the newspaper business, some journalists refuse to scramble for the lifeboats.

Anonymous said...

Nose down flaps up into the side of hill at full power. If this decline was so well predicted, why didn't MNI take corrective actions earlier?

Anonymous said...

How's that hope and change working out for you.

Will the last one out please take the quarter bucket for the Sunday TV guide with you. Forget about turning out the lights....grab the quarters!!!

Run Comrade.

Think Again said...

Ask any manager here. Things are great! Couldn't be better!