Skip to comments.The Five Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week (NY Slimes is #4)
Posted on 04/21/2006 7:30:48 AM PDT by Grampa Dave
Opinion: The Five Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week
4. Penny Ante The New York Times Co. (NYT:NYSE - commentary - research - Cramer's Take) is feeling the pinch of aggrieved shareholders.
Big investors took a shot across management's bow this week by withholding 28% of votes from the company's board slate. A 5.6% holder, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, wants to eliminate the Class B stock that gives the Sulzberger family control of the board despite its tiny financial stake.
"MSIM believes that the dual-class voting at The New York Times Company, which is an exception to the general rule of one-share, one-vote, creates special privileges as well as responsibilities," the firm says in a Tuesday press release. "MSIM contends that the board and management at The New York Times Company have failed to fulfill these responsibilities effectively."
A look at New York Times' stock performance seems to bear the critics out. Shares of the publisher are down 5% this year and have lost half their value since they peaked in June 2002, as online rivals led by Google (GOOG:Nasdaq - commentary - research - Cramer's Take) and Yahoo! (YHOO:Nasdaq - commentary - research - Cramer's Take) have grabbed more ad dollars. The stock's plunge means that $1,000 worth of Times shares bought five years ago is now worth $610 or so, plus dividends of around $70.
The Times declines to comment on the board voting or on Morgan Stanley's claims. But the company did reach out to shareholders in a gesture that seems characteristically half-baked. On Tuesday afternoon, the Times raised its quarterly dividend by a penny a share, to 17.5 cents.
"We are pleased that in a challenging advertising environment, the company has remained committed to improving shareholder return through annual increases in our dividend," said Chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. "We have grown our dividend by a compound annual growth rate of 7.1% over the last five years. These dividend increases reflect our board's confidence in the Company's long-term growth prospects and our financial position."
Sorry, but it's plain to see that no one else shares that confidence.
Dumb-o-Meter score: 82. Sulzberger is looking a bit pound-foolish.
Excerpted. Only #4, the part of the article dealing with the NY Slimes.
Pinch is now looking pound foolish after his right eye got pounded by an angry Bike Messenger.
I think they should start a stock buyback program so they'll piss away all their onhand cash...
I was required to read The Times for my English class while a sophomore in HS. Haven't read it since. That was in '59!
Morgan Stanley is not pleased to have wasted their money with the NYT stock price cut in half...with the rest of the stock market going up for years.
They should " eliminate the Class B stock that gives the Sulzberger family control of the board despite its tiny financial stake..."
It will not happen, but it should.
The slimes will continue to fall and fail.
They've destroyed their reputation for integrity, and they've offended their advertisers and the public.
If it weren't simply for their long history and establised name, they'd have gone bankrupt by now.
The board is being controlled by a minority of the shareholders, and that board is not acting in the interests of the majority of their shareholders. Eventually their going to find out that liberals aren't the only ones that know how to sue.
That vicious little queer traitor, Pinchy Boy, gets yet another black eye. This one is for his corrupt, utterly incompetent management of the NY Slimes.
I have another theory on how the Ny Slimes and the other left wing newspapers haven't really been slammed.
The ownership of the stocks of these fishwraps is dominated by retirement funds and mutual funds which are probably managed and controlled by liberals.
These elite limo liberals have no problem of backing up their limos loaded with millions of $'s of their investors and pending retirees, and then dumping millions of those $'s into the financial black holes of the fishwraps. This appears to be a conscious effort to keep these dinosaur fishwraps financially viable as political weapons against Republicans and our country.
What is needed is some lawsuits and some Attorney Generals in conservative states investigating this ponzi game with investment $'s from retirees and owners of mutual funds. Then this BS will stop.
The other day I got a call from a NYT salesman asking me to buy a subscription. I told him I didn't want that paper in my driveway let alone in my house, he then told me the times was the most honest paper in the country, to which I replied,'Who told you to say that, Jason Blair?'While he was still sputtering I added,'look fella, why don't you try looking for a job with a reputable company'CLICK!
I know - I keep reading excuses related to internet competition, etc. but there is NO MENTION of the inherent bias in so many of the articles I read. I don't think they have a clue.
I have all ways felt that there should be an automatic buy back of any corporate stock when the stock value drops below a certain %, with the top dogs and board members leading the way in the buy back.
There has been a movement behind the scenes re requiring mutual fund managers, execs of the mutual fund companies and their board members to own shares of the funds they push on the public. That might eliminate about 90% of the mutual funds and in particuliar funds that invest in crap like the NY Slimes and other dino fish wraps.
Have you seen this ?
"MediaNews Group Inc. has offered to buy three Knight Ridder Inc. newspapers in California and one in Minnesota..."
McClatchy currently owns 12 daily papers. The purchase of San Jose-based Knight Ridder, which is expected to close this summer, would increase McClatchy's holdings to 32 papers after it sells the 12 papers in markets that don't fit McClatchy's growth strategy.
"I was required to read The Times for my English class while a sophomore in HS. Haven't read it since. That was in '59!"
The NY Slimes is required reading for many of the community colleges in California and some of the state Universities.
One of my neighbors, who is very conservative has had the NY Slimes delivered for over a decade.
Finally one day I asked him why. He said he never read it, but it was required by the local community college for students enrolled full time. He has had 3 children attend the local community college, so the Slimes was delivered at a near give away price. His youngest child is now in a University where the Slimes is not required. My neighbor's driveway is still polluted with the daily delivery of the Slimes and no one is paying for it.
The Slimes magically appears for free at many medical offices and buildings in our area with the San Francisco Gay Rhonicle.
One has to wonder how many of these no charge Slimes are counted as paid subscriptions to Enron the books of the Slimes.
They don't call here any more, and that was before the new rules went into effect re telephone solicitation.
This past week, my wife got an offer for a Weekly subscription to the Slimes for under $3/week. There is no way they can afford print the copies up and get them delivered to our driveway for $3/week. So are they using valuable $'s to pony up their so called paid subscription numbers?
Yes, I have. Media News is a non profit outfit, which buys newspapers and comes in and fires most of the worthless liberals working for the fishwrap.
The liberals in San Jose at the Mercury are in full panic re this possible transaction. They know that they are not qualified to flip burgers or take orders at their local fast foods.
NYT = Ny Slimes stock, WPO= Washington Compost stock, MNI= McClatchey stock, TRB= Chicago Tribune/LA Slimes Stock