Business

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp sees net profits halve

Bradley Cooper in American Sniper film Image copyright Warner Bros/AP
Image caption The success of Chris Kyle's autobiography American Sniper helped lift revenues in News Corp's books division

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, owner of The Times, The Sunday Times and The Wall Street Journal newspapers, saw third quarter net profits fall 52%, compared with the same period in 2014.

Declining advertising revenues and circulations for print publications meant profits fell to $23m (£15.2m; €20.6m) for the quarter ended 31 March.

Revenues also slipped 1% to $2.06bn.

Chief executive Robert Thomson highlighted a strong performance in its property listing business, Realtor.com.

"The new News Corp continues to build a firm foundation for digital growth," said Mr Thomson.

"We see that most clearly in the successful integration of realtor.com, which grew audience and revenue at record levels in the third quarter.

"News Corp is now a global leader in digital real estate."

American Sniper

Revenues for the online property division rose 67% to $170m for the quarter, after results from its Move subsidiary were included.

Newspapers, on the other hand, continued to struggle, with revenue in News Corp's news and information division falling 9% overall, as ad revenue declined 12%, and circulation and subscription revenue fell 6%.

But revenue in News Corp's book publishing division, which includes HarperCollins, rose 14% to $402m over the quarter.

The company said the continued popularity of the late Chris Kyle's autobiography, American Sniper, had helped boost results. The book was turned into a Hollywood film starring Bradley Cooper.

The group revenue results were below analyst expectations - a fact the company blamed partially on currency fluctuations.

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