Tag Archives: Agate changes
The Sioux Falls Argus Leader, a Gannett newspaper, becomes the next newspaper to announce that it is cutting its stock listings. The South Dakota newspaper, which has a daily circulation of about 50,000, will make the cuts on April 4, which is next Tuesday. It joins smaller newspapers in Asbury Park, N.J.; El Paso, Texas; Bloomington, Ill., and others that have made similar moves. The Argus Leader is the biggest newspaper in South Dakota.
Among the bigger papers that have cut stock listings so far this year are the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Newsday, Chicago Tribune, Rocky Mountain News, Orlando Sentinel and Cincinnati Enquirer.
Argus Leader Executive Editor Randall Beck writes, “The Argus Leader soon will be redesigning its daily stock listings, and we need your help. Starting Tuesday, April 4, we will be replacing the current list of prices from the New York Stock Exchange with a summary of stocks of local interest and the most actively traded, as well as major indexes and changes in the commodities and livestock markets.
“This change will allow us to devote more space to local news. Here’s how you can help: If there is a specific stock you would like to see included in the daily listings, please e-mail us at stocks@argusleader .com or send a letter to the Argus Leader, Box 5034, Sioux Falls, SD 57117-5034, Attn: Stock Listings.”
Read the announcement here.
On March 14, the Beaver County Times newspaper in Pennsylvania dropped its stock listings from Tuesday through Friday to Sunday only. The small daily was simply following a trend that many other newspapers have taken in past months to lower their newsprint costs and take advantage of the fact that many people now get their stock listings on the Internet.
However, reader’s advocate Marsha Keefer noted in Monday’s paper that the Times has begun publishing some stock listings during the week once again, an admission to its readers that the information is valuable.
Keffer writes, “Apparently, based on the number of calls from dissatisfied readers, Beaver County residents either do not have Internet access or simply prefer conventional printed stock tables.
“Certainly, a newspaper is more convenient and portable, and those seem to be the key reasons people gave for wanting to read the stocks in print.
“The Times yielded and offered a compromise.
“On Thursday, abbreviated stock tables were reinstated. While not comprehensive, the listings include the top NYSE, Amex and Nasdaq stocks and mutual funds; stocks of local interest; 52-week index; and a guide on how to read the tables.
“Times Executive Editor Keith Briscoe said the paper’s decision to eliminate the daily stocks wasn’t a bad decision, but an untimely one.
“‘A newspaper cannot list every stock, but what it can do is offer perspective – to point out market trends, successes and failures. That’s what we will be looking at as we continue to evaluate our stock listings.’”
To read Keefer’s column, go here.
The Associated Press’ Brad Skillman, who oversees the agate operations for the wire service, is leaving to become an editor for Bloomberg News.
Skillman was named director of AP’s Markets Information Group, which disseminates stock tables and other financial data to a variety of media, in 2003. Skillman, 38, is a native of Brookline, Mass., and a graduate of Swarthmore College, where he received a bachelor of arts degree in history. He has a master’s degree in business administration at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
Before running the agate, Skillman joined AP Markets in 2001 as the deputy director for content and marketing. Earlier, Skillman was AP’s assistant business editor, succeeding Steve Rosenfeld, who left to go to The New York Times. Skillman joined AP in December 1997 in the multimedia department and in June 1998 moved to business news, where he was the morning supervisor.
As the AP agate person, Skillman had to work with newspapers who were making changes to their stock listings, or cutting them altogether. He still believes in the future of stock listings.
The Sarasota Herald-Tribune announced in its Sunday paper that it is added a Money page to the business section during the week where national columnists will run. To make room, it’s cutting some of the information it has previously offered with its stock listings.
The paper states, “The listings in Saturday and Sunday editions will offer readers the more in-depth details about their stocks. The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq tables will no longer have year-to-date and dividends listed Tuesday through Friday.
“There will be no changes to the American Stock Exchange, Toronto Stock Exchange, world markets or foreign exchange rates.
“And we’ve beefed up our stock market Web page with some great financial tools. Just type www.heraldtribune.com/stocks in your browser.”
I think it’s a smart move by the Herald-Tribune, a New York Times newspaper, not to cut its stock listings completely. The Sarasota market, where I once worked as a business reporter, is a primarily elderly populaton that, I am assuming, prefers to get its stock prices in the newspaper and not on the Internet.
Read the announcement here.
The Augusta Chronicle, a daily newspaper in Georgia, has cut its Saturday stock listings.
Executive Editor Dennis Sodomka writes, “Again, this was a business decision. We think only a small percentage of our readers use these listings, and there are other readily available sources for stock quotes, such as The Chronicle’s Web site, augustachronicle.com.
“To get the latest quotes on stock from all the exchanges, and news about the stock market, go to chronicle.augusta.com/stocks/. You can search for a particular stock or just browse through the list of all of them.
“Believe me, I don’t like to take anything out of the paper. My job is to put things in the newspaper. But putting out a newspaper is a business, and we have to do the best we can with the resources available.”
Read his column, which includes other changes made to the paper, here.
Similar sized newspapers that have cut stock listings in recent weeks include the Jackson Citizen-Patriot in Michigan, the Bloomington Pantagraph in Illinois and the El Paso Times in Texas.
According to an article in this morning’s Boston Herald, the Boston Globe is set to be visited by Arthur Sulzberger, the CEO of parent company New York Times Co., amid concerns that the paper is up for some job cuts and other changes. Among those changes would be an elimination or a reduction in the stock listings.
Herald economics reporter Jay Fitzgerald writes, “Meanwhile, it is contemplating eliminating or reducing its business section stock pages, among other moves.”
The move would not be a surprise. The Times will cut its stock listings beginning with the April 4 paper, it announced last week. Papers also state that most readers now get their stock information on the Internet. And plenty of other metropolitan newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Atlanta Constitution and Newsday, have cut stock listings in the past few months.
The motive behind such moves is to save on newsprint costs. Some newspapers have replaced the stock listings with editorial content, but most have just reduced the size of the business section, which is bad news for the biz journalism profession.
The Jackson Citizen Patriot in Michigan announced in its Sunday paper that it is cutting its Sunday stock listings. The paper conducted a survey of its readers and found out some interesting information.
Business editor Sara Scott writes, “Last summer, the Citizen Patriot conducted a readership survey that indicated many readers wanted more in-depth coverage of business issues and the local economy.
“The survey also showed only 9 percent of readers regularly use the Sunday stock listings.
“We assume many of our readers already get their stock and mutual fund information on the Internet. We offer stock and mutual fund listings on our Web site at www.mlive.com. You can access the information by clicking on “stocks” and then typing in the name of the stock or mutual fund you’re interested in.
“However, we will also continue publishing the stocks requested by our readers. Let us know which listings you would like to see the Citizen Patriot continue publishing.”
The paper says it will begin offering an expanded six-page Sunday business section instead. Read about it here.
It’s been the bigger papers such as the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and Atlanta Constitution that have been announcing that they’re cutting stock listings so far this year. The smaller papers, with a few exceptions such as the Asbury Park Press, have not been following this trend.
Andrew Cassel, who writes a column about the economy for the Philadelphia Inquirer, writes Wednesday about the turbulent history of newspapers in the wake of Knight-Ridder’s announced sale on Monday. Cassel notes that newspapers have faced dramatic competitive issues in the past 20 years, and that stock listings are one of the things being evaluated.
Cassel writes, “Twenty years ago, stock listings were a reason many people bought a newspaper in the first place. We were the only source of up-to-date stock prices when up-to-date meant yesterday’s close. The costs – newsprint, labor, a data feed from Wall Street – were all worth it because they gave us a competitive advantage.
“Today that advantage is gone. Online stock tickers display prices nanoseconds old, and dozens of services let you track and chart your investments in depth, for free. Fewer and fewer investors have any use for the tiny type on our pages.
“Yet we still print them, spending buckets of money that arguably might be better invested elsewhere in the paper. Why? Because we worry about removing something that a core group of our readers might still want.
“But maybe not for much longer.
“Buried under the big stories about Knight Ridder’s breakup this week, there was another newspaper-industry story: The New York Times is eliminating its daily stock tables, following papers in Los Angeles, Chicago and elsewhere that have cut back.
“The Inquirer hasn’t decided to join them yet. But the question is out there.
“Welcome, dear readers, to our uncertain future.”
Read the rest of his column here. I don’t agree with Cassel, but I think he makes an excellent argument for why newspapers are getting rid of stock listings.
However, I think stock listings still have an important place in newspaper business sections. Call me old fashioned.
As expected in a post on this blog yesterday, the country’s most prestigious newspaper expects to cut its daily stock listings next month as a way to trim newsprint expenses and will offer a new package of interactive tools and market information on its Web site for investors who want the information.
Other newspapers that have severely cut stock listings so far this year include the Chicago Tribune, Newsday, Rocky Mountain News, Orlando Sentinel, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Providence Journal.
The Times’ article in this morning’s paper said, “The Times will replace the tables in the newspaper with two pages of market and economic information, including performance listings of the top 100 stocks in the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index, market analysis, mutual fund information, charts tracking individual company performance and lists of foreign currency exchange rates.
“The newspaper said that the features to be added to its Web site would include investment tools, breaking financial news and individual portfolio information.
“Readers will also be able to expand their personal portfolios online and create customized stock searches that allow them to receive free e-mail messages on stock changes or company news, the newspaper said.
“The expanded information on the Web site, nytimes.com, will also include a multipart interactive graphic, the company said.”
“The complete financial tables will continue to appear in the Sunday issue of the paper.”
The New York Times is said to be considering a dramatic cut of its stock listings on the business section on Monday through Friday in exchange for some sort of Web system that provides stock prices, according to this post.
The change will likely occur on April 1, which is not an April Fool’s joke. The paper would be the largest to cut stock listings this year. Other major papers to cut stock listings include the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Chicago Tribune, Newsday, Orlando Sentinel, Rocky Mountain News and Providence Journal.
The Deadline Hollywood Daily states, “In the paper will be a very limited 1 1/2 pages, trimming those thousands of stock tables to just hundreds. Plans are being finalized what to do on the weekends. Newspaper industry sources tell me that this could represent a $10 million savings to the NYT in newsprint costs and editorial space: “The way for papers to save money short of getting rid of people is to get rid of stock pages.” For years, the nationâ€™s 900+ newspapers have run the APâ€™s stock tables, so the trend is going to hurt non-profit APâ€™s revenues.”