The company, which owns hundreds of small to medium-sized newspapers including The Carthage Press, Neosho Daily News, and the Joplin Daily rose 33 cents to $19.81 per share today after announcing it would increase its dividends from 32 cents to 37 cents per share.:
And some questioned the wisdom of the GateHouse's initial public offering last year because of the tough conditions. GateHouse said, however, that its focus in small and midsize papers was sparing it the worst readership declines which were hitting larger, more prominent ones.
So far, GateHouse's focus seems to be helping as the company also announced healthy earnings Friday. The company reported fourth-quarter net income Friday of $7.8 million, or 23 cents per share, up from $3.3 million, or 15 cents per share, the same period last year. Revenues were $97.9 million for the period ending Dec. 31, up from $52.6 million last year.
The results were a surprise for Wall Street. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had expected only 10 cents per share.