CBS Post Profit, Helped By Syndication Sales

By Andrew Gauthier 

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The Wall Street Journal

CBS Corp. reported a solid profit for the third quarter, as its television revenue grew on syndication sales.

The New York company joined several media peers this week in noting quarter-to-quarter improvement in what has been a dismal year for advertising. Ad sales account for more than half of CBS’s revenue. It relies on them at its CBS TV network, its TV and radio stations, its outdoor-billboard business and its Web sites.

After the economic upheaval of last fall, CBS saw advertisers pull back, particularly at the local level. Overall ad revenue fell 16% through the first half of this year. Now CBS says it is seeing improvement, including at its string of 29 local TV stations.

“We are seeing strong evidence of a recovery right now,” Chief Executive Leslie Moonves said in a conference call to discuss results.

Net income totaled $207.6 million, or 30 cents a share. The profit was a big shift from the year-earlier period, when CBS had a loss of $12.46 billion More…