NYT Co. Feb. Ad Revenue Slips 6.6%

CHICAGO The New York Times Co. reported Tuesday that its February revenue from continuing operations slipped 2.6 percent as ad sales fell 6.6 percent from February 2007.

Classified revenue fell almost 20 percent in February and is down more than 21 percent for the year so far.

Ad revenue was down double digits at its New England Group, including the Boston Globe, and its Regional Media Group, which includes mostly Southern newspapers.

The company also warned it expects results for March to be “adversely affected” by the early Easter this year. Easter Sunday, which fell in April last year, is traditionally a time of reduced advertising at both the flagship New York Times and Globe, the company said.

At the NYT Media, ad revenue decreased 4 percent with weakness across all major categories of classified, and softness in department store, fine arts, and mass-market retail advertising.

Advertising revenue at N. E. Media plunged 11.5 percent, also on weak classified across the board, and soft retail results primarily due to declines in computer/office supplies, apparel/footwear, and food/drug categories, the company said.

At Regional Media, ad revenue fell nearly 16 percent, pushed by continued weakness in classified and retail advertising declines largely due to weakness in banking, home furnishings, and telecommunications.

Internet advertising, which is included with print totals, was up about 14.5 percent mostly on growth in display advertising.

At the About Group — which includes the Web sites of About.com and Caloriecount.com — ad revenue rose almost 21 percent on growth in cost-per-click advertising and the acquisitions of ConsumerSearch.com and UCompareHealthCare.com during 2007. On a same-property basis, ad revenues for the group were up about 15 percent.