Donald Trump wants The New York Times
Can the billionaire buy his way into ownership of the respected newspaper company?
Shares of the company, which also owns the Boston Globe, were barely budging on the news, indicating that Wall Street isn't holding its breath for a deal to happen. A spokesperson for the Times couldn't immediately be reached.
It's unclear exactly how much progress, if any, Trump has made in buying the newspaper company. New York magazine, which broke the story, says "Trump has engaged in more than one meeting to discuss how he might buy the Grey Lady." If Trump does make a credible offer for the paper, the company's board of directors would have a fiduciary duty to consider it.
Trump has had a contentious relationship with the company's flagship newspaper for years. In 2011, he lost a libel case against Tim O'Brien, a former reporter and editor for the paper, who argued in a book that the 56-year-old wasn't really a billionaire. O'Brien, now with The Huffington Post, couldn't immediately be reached. Many at the paper, including columnist Gail Collins, have mocked Trump's claims that President Obama may not have been born in the United States.
If Trump is successful -- and that's a big if -- he would have a tough time convincing employees and advertisers that he wouldn't use the paper to promote his own political agenda. In fact, some newspapers around the country have been snapped up by wealthy business owners with their own motives. Real-estate developer Doug Manchester, for example, bought the San Diego Union-Tribune in 2011 and turned the paper into what Media Matters for America calls "a corporate shill."
Trump's interest comes at a tough moment for The New York Times, which has recently offered buyouts to newsroom staff to cut costs as it struggles to reinvent itself in the digital age. The deadline for accepting these offers is Thursday, according to the paper. Wall Street isn't expecting the struggles to end anytime soon. Revenue in the December quarter is expected to fall 11%, according to analysts' estimates. Profit is expected to be 31 cents, down from 45 cents a year earlier.
Wall Street sees better times ahead for the venerable publisher, whose digital strategy has gained traction. The average 52-week price target on the stock is $9.58. about 10% higher than where it currently trades. Shares of the publisher have surged more than 13% over the past year.
--Jonathan Berr does not own shares of the listed stocks. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr
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Why does the public continue to feed this brats' ego? He says the most ignorant things and makes a mockery of the democratic system yet he still gets air time and press time. Let him slither back under the rock he came from. He is a clown. I want to take this moment to apologize to all clowns,
That is the most stupid statement I've ever heard. Sounds to me like Mr. Trump has already bought Michael Cohen. The statement "there is nothing He can't do" only appies to ONE and that one is GOD. Now, Michael and Mr. Trump, I'm not weathy and I hardly have a dollar to my name. But, I have something NEITER or you can buy!!! Integrity!! I was once told by a woman she "could get into ANY man's pants!" Had she not said "any," I would have agreed with her. But, when she said "any" I replied to her with "you can't get into this man's pants." That has been years ago and that discussion never came up again. There are things Donald Trump's money cannot buy.
Michael Cohen, a Trump spokesman says. "Mr. Trump is so smart and so rich that if he wants it, he will get it."
Obviously a statement by someone on the Trump payroll.
Least people forget, Donald Trump inherited his wealth, around $20 million from his father. For the longest time, it was joked that he took a $20 million inheritance and turned it into a $20 million dollar business, meaning it went nowhere. But if you have enough money, enough lawyers and bankers backing you up, eventually you'll make money which is what Donald Trump finally did. Most of us don't have the advantage of starting out with millions of dollars and teams of lawyers and bankers to support us.
The final question is, do we really want Donald Trump owning the NYT and influencing what is reported in it?
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