-News Corp.'s earnings more than doubled in its fiscal second quarter as strong advertising markets and affiliate revenue powered its television segment, while its film and digital media business continued to struggle.I can see the kids at Media Matters rushing out a release declaring earnings would have tripled if it weren't for their stalwart efforts.
News Corp.'s cable networks have been the chief driver of the company's financial performance for several quarters, while its broadcast division has perked up in recent quarters as ad markets have rebounded and the division begins to enjoy more subscription revenue from recent affiliate agreements it has negotiated with major distributors.
Meanwhile, its film division is wrestling with declines in DVD sales, which is a trend found throughout the industry as consumers adopt online video services. Its satellite division has struggled because of weakness in economies in Europe, and its publishing operations are dealing with the industry's transition to digital media, where business models are still in flux.
For the quarter, News Corp.--owner of Dow Jones & Co., publisher of this newswire--posted net income of $642 million, or 24 cents a share, up from year-ago results of $254 million, or 10 cents a share. The latest results included restructuring charges related to an overhaul of MySpace, the social networking site.
Excluding such charges, the company's adjusted per-share earnings came in at 29 cents, a penny above the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
On its top line, revenue increased slightly to $8.76 billion, surpassing the Thomson Reuters estimate of $8.7 billion.
In the fiscal second quarter, News Corp.'s cable networks division posted nearly $2 billion in revenue, up 12% from a year ago, and its operating income rose 22% to $735 million. Ad revenue at its domestic cable channels, like the Fox News Channel, increased 12%, while domestic affiliate revenue was up 10%. The unit's international operations saw ad revenue up 27%, while affiliate revenue was up 17%.Guess all those boycotts just aren't working out.