Alan Mutter was paying attention when The NAA tried to quietly dump its latest revenue numbers on the afternoon before Thanksgiving. And what he saw was grim, including continued falloff in all categories, and the second quarter in a row of declining interactive numbers.
The performance in the third quarter was affected only partially by the worldwide financial panic that froze the credit markets in mid-September, throttling the already waning demand for hiring, auto sales and home purchases.
The outlook for the final period of the year is worse, when the three classified verticals are likely to experience the full impact of the economic meltdown.
So it looks like I’ll need to update this chart I created at the end of Q2, showing constant-dollar print revenue at newspapers dropping below 1982 levels. When I made that estimate in September, I said 2008 print revenue would hit $36 billion, a number that needs to come down by at least a half billion (applying 2007 Q4 decline percentages, clearly an optimistic projection), if not a whole lot more.