Stronger year-over-year expected income growth for Gannett's publishing and TV operations sent its stock soaring on Tuesday.
Gannett Co. expects between $93 million and $100 million in net income -- a significant hike over its net income results in the second quarter, which stood at $70.5 million.
This equates to 39 to 42 cents earnings per share; market analysts were expecting around 30 cents. In midday trading, the company's stock rocketed up 20% to over $12.00 a share.
The company said its third-quarter year-over-year publishing comparisons will improve versus first- and second-quarter numbers. Other major newspaper groups are also expecting better end-of-the-year results, as compared with the first half. Overall, the company forecasts quarterly revenue between $1.307 billion and $1.320 billion.
The picture is still unclear for its television operations. The company still expects TV revenues to decline by some 20% in the third quarter versus revenues in the third quarter of 2008. However, analysts say it does not appear that the TV marketers will make any further cutbacks in the second half of the year.
The good news for Gannett's TV group: a "near tripling of its retransmission fees" will partially offset the absence of some $50 million in Olympic and political advertising that the company's TV stations grabbed a year ago in the same period.
Gannett has 84 daily U.S. newspapers, including USA Today, more than 700 magazines and other non-dailies, including USA Weekend, and 23 television stations in 19 U.S. markets.
Gannett will report its third-quarter 2009 earnings on Oct. 19.