In part because of a month with one less Sunday -- and one less opportunity for ad-packed Sunday papers -- January was chilly for Motley Fool Income Investor selection Lee Enterprises
Lee Enterprises' total operating revenue decreased 3.2% to $388.5 million, in part because January 2007 included one less Sunday than January 2006. Lee's advertising revenue fell 3.8%, but online revenues proved a bright spot, increasing by 44.7%.
Chairman and CEO Mary Junck outlined several of Lee's ongoing initiatives in the related press release. Lee is in the midst of launching its Yahoo!
The newspaper industry has suffered lately, as the Internet continuously hacks away at physical circulation. New York Times
Lee generates little love in our Motley Fool CAPS database, with a mere one-star rating; however, it's only been rated by 29 players, so be sure to chime in there if you have an opinion. Its recommendation for Motley Fool Income Investor not only kept its dividend in mind, but also noted its solid Internet presence and focus on small local markets, which might help insulate it from tough industry challenges.
As I said when I covered Lee's earnings last quarter, though, the stock looks a bit pricey at the moment. With single-digit growth in earnings expected for the next several years, Lee's multiples look high; its PEG ratio is a whopping 3.64. Although Lee Enterprises may have some advantages, I'm not sure now's a tantalizing time to buy in.
Alyce Lomax does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned.
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