Trinity Mirror sees ad decline

Steve Dinneen
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TRINITY MIRROR limped through a difficult start to a year, with advertising sales in the first four months falling 10 per cent.

The newspaper publisher said the fall was partly down to the government cutting its advertising spend.

Ad revenue comprises more than half of the company’s total sales, with a little over 10 per cent exposed to the public sector, according to Panmure Gordon analyst Alex DeGroote.

Trinity Mirror’s shares, which have shed about 39 per cent since the company issued a gloomy outlook in March, fell 3.4 per cent yesterday.

DeGroote said he expects the tough market conditions to continue through the second-quarter, adding rising newsprint costs had also weighed on overall performance.

The announcement echoed that of rival publisher Johnston Press, which on Tuesday said its ad sales fell 11 per cent due to government spending cuts, and that it would reduce costs further to meet full-year targets.

The relapse in the UK advertising market also hampered ITV, which on Wednesday said its key advertising sales were set to fall for the first time since 2009.

Trinity Mirror, which has been undergoing a series of cost cuts, trebled its savings target for the year to £15m. In March, Trinity Mirror reported a 17 per cent rise in full-year operating profit.