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Rupert Murdoch's Newscorp Posts $1.6 Billion Loss

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The Daily Banter Headline grab (from the L.A Times):

News Corp. reported a nearly $1.6-billion loss in its fiscal fourth quarter, reflecting the declining value of its publishing businesses — a beleaguered unit that it intends to spin off into a separate publicly traded company next year.

For the April to June quarter, the Rupert Murdoch-controlled company reported a net loss of $1.55 billion, or 64 cents a share. That compared with a $683-million profit, or 26 cents a share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

The quarterly results, reported Wednesday, included a $2.9-billion pre-tax impairment and restructuring charge that the company said was related to its Australian newspaper and TV operations and other publishing titles. During the quarter, the company took a $57-million charge related to costs of ongoing investigations into the bribery and phone hacking scandal that has engulfed the company's British newspaper subsidiary.

The company's publishing portfolio includes the Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Times of London and the HarperCollins book publishing house.

Excluding the charges, News Corp.'s fourth-quarter profit came in at 32 cents a share — matching analyst estimates.

News Corp. generated revenue of $8.4 billion for the quarter, a decline of 7% from the nearly $9 billion it took in during the year-earlier period. Strength at the company's key cable television networks was weighed down by issues elsewhere in the company, including sagging ratings at Fox Broadcasting Co.'s once dominant TV franchise "American Idol."

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