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Why The New York Times Stock Jumped on Thursday

By Daniel Sparks – Feb 6, 2020 at 11:20AM

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Digital subscriptions continue to grow rapidly, fueling the media company's revenue growth.

What happened

Shares of The New York Times (NYT 0.45%) jumped sharply on Thursday, rising 10.4% as of 11:30 a.m. EST.

The stock's gain follows the company's strong fourth-quarter results, which featured better-than-expected revenue and adjusted earnings per share (EPS). The quarter's performance was bolstered by robust performance in the company's digital subscription business.

A businessman looking at his smartphone while in the back of a taxi cab.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

The media company reported fourth-quarter revenue of $508.4 million, up 1.1% year over year. Analysts, on average, were expecting revenue of about $502 million. Advertising revenue during the period declined 10.7% year over year but this was offset by a 4.5% rise in subscription revenue and a 30.2% jump in "other" revenue.

Digital-only subscriptions were the primary driver of the company's subscription revenue during the period. Revenue from digital-only products, including its news, crossword, and cooking apps, rose 16% year over year to $122.1 million. Paid digital-only subscriptions across all three of these apps totaled nearly 4.4 million, up 342,000 sequentially.

Non-GAAP (adjusted) EPS was $0.43 -- ahead of a consensus analyst estimate of $0.35.

Now what

In the company's first quarter of 2020, management expects subscription revenue to increase at a year-over-year rate in the mid-single digits, fueled by digital-only subscription revenue growth in the high teens. Total advertising revenue, however, is expected to decline by about 10% year over year during the period.

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends The New York Times. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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