Prudential Cuts New York Times to Underweight from Neutral

The media company wouldn't provide guidance on its 2006 revenue -- but warned of plans for twice as much capital spending

Prudential downgraded the New York Times (NYT ) to underweight from neutral, citing the media company's recent financial performance announcement.

The New York Times said it will not provide guidance on its 2006 revenue, but its capital spending for 2006 will be roughly twice the level it was in 2005.

Analyst Steven Barlow says the news gives him no choice but to downgrade his stock recommendation, although the company's fundamentals have been worrisome to him for some time. He cut his 2006 earnings per share estimate by 3 cents per share to $1.57. He says that based upon a perceived increase in risk to his estimates in light of the lack of revenue or expense guidance, he cut his price target multiple to 8 times from 9 times earnings before interest depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA. He also cut his $26 price target to $23.

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