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Gatehouse Media Evicted


Newspaper stock delisted by NYSE.

There's little reason for the savvy investor to notice, but think of it as a sign of the times: The New York Stock Exchange (NYX) has halted floor trading of another newspaper stock.

Gatehouse Media (GHS) closed Thursday at $1, up three cents. The 52-week range is 87 cents to $19.

To return to floor trading, a stock must trade above $1.10 a share for (gasp) an entire day. However, if the stock trades below $1 over a consecutive 30-day trading period, it could be de-listed. For now, the stock will trade on electronic markets, including Arca.

Analysts questioned Gatehouse Media's plan to fund expansion with debt while paying a significant dividend.

Gatehouse publishes about 100 daily newspapers, as well as weeklies and shoppers, that reach about 10 million readers in 20 states. It also operates about 250 websites.

In February, the NYSE halted floor trading of Sun-Times Media Group (formerly SVN), publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times and about 100 community papers in the Chicago metropolitan area. In March the exchange halted floor trading of Journal Register Company (JRCO), publisher of the New Haven Register in Connecticut and about 20 small daily papers in Pennsylvania, Michigan and New York.

Steep declines in advertising and circulation have hit many major companies in what many bloggers call the "dead tree media," including McClatchy Newspapers (MNI), Gannett (GCI) and the New York Times (NYT). The stock of each has taken a hit.

McClatchy recently fetched $4.89. The 52-week range is $4.49 to $27.50.

Gannett recently traded at $17.26. The 52-week range is $14.62 to $54.65.

The New York Times Co. recently traded at $13.29. The 52-week range is $12.08 to $23.88.
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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