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Media General Profit Down 24 Pct.

July 13, 1999

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Media General Inc. reported a 24 percent decrease in profits for the second quarter, a drop it blamed largely on lower revenues in its newsprint production division.

The Richmond-based media conglomerate reported today that earnings for the quarter ended June 27 were $16.5 million, or 61 cents per share, down from $21.5 million, or 80 cents per share, in the same period of last year.

Despite the drop, the results were well above analyst expectations of 55 cents per share, according to First Call Corp.

Revenues for the quarter also dropped. The company reported $199.6 million in revenues, down from $211.5 million for the second quarter of 1998. More than half of the decline was in newsprint, where revenues fell to $24.6 million from $31.8 million.

``Newsprint segment results fell sharply, reflecting the significant decline in newsprint prices which approached five-year lows during the quarter,″ said J. Stewart Bryan III, the company’s chairman and chief executive officer.

Net income for the first six months of the year was $27.8 million, or $1.03 per diluted share, compared with $34.3 million, or $1.27 per share, for the first six months of 1998.

Revenues for the first six months of 1999 decreased 4 percent to $391.4 million from $407.6 million a year ago.

Media General has interests in newspapers, broadcast television, recycled newsprint and information services.

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