News Corp. books loss on $2.9B write-down

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(AP) LOS ANGELES - News Corp. (NWS) posted a $1.55 billion loss in the fourth quarter after booking a large write-down on its publishing assets.

The company's $2.9 billion write-down was largely related to the declining value of its publishing assets. In the last year, News Corp. has shouldered heavy legal costs associated with investigations of the phone hacking scandal involving its U.K. tabloids.

News Corp. said in late June that it is preparing to spin off its publishing assets into a separate company.

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The loss for the April-June period came to 64 cents per share. That compared to net income of $683 million, or 26 cents per share, a year ago.

Excluding special charges, earnings were 32 cents per share, matching the estimate of analysts polled by FactSet.

Revenue fell 7 percent to $8.37 billion, well short of the $8.78 billion expected by analysts.

News Corp.'s stock fell 81 cents, or 3.4 percent, to $22.91 in after-hours trading.