LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The Los Angeles Times eliminated 45 advertising jobs in a reorganization aimed at cutting costs and boosting profitability following the $6.8 billion acquisition of the newspaper by Chicago-based Tribune Co.

Advertising revenue slowed this year to 5 percent from 7 percent in 1999, the Times reported in Thursday editions. To reduce costs, the regional advertising division will be combined with the main advertising department.

Overall, the Times' financial performance has lagged behind its industry peer group, which includes papers such as The New York Times, The Washington Post and Chicago Tribune, said John McKeon, senior vice president of advertising.

The Times' had a 16 percent operating profit in 1999, compared with a peer group average of 23 percent, McKeon said. The advertising cost-to-revenue ratio was 5.5 percent, while the peer group averaged 4.5 percent.

The cutbacks were announced on Wednesday, when the Times also eliminated 125 reporting and editing positions in its Our Times community news operation. Our Times sections, which focus on news from Los Angeles neighborhoods and suburbs, are inserted into regular editions of the main newspaper.