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Twenty-First Century Fox Profit Gets Lift From Presidential Election

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Rupert MurdochPhotograph by Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez — AFP/Getty Images

(Reuters) – Twenty-First Century Fox reported a slightly better-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by higher ad revenue in its cable division.

The Rupert Murdoch-controlled company’s shares (FOX) were up 0.78% in extended trading on Wednesday.

Fox has been benefiting from the most sensational U.S. presidential election campaign. Fox News, known for a lineup of politically conservative commentators, is the most-watched channel in basic cable television this year, with an average of 2.2 million prime-time viewers, according to Nielsen data through June.

Revenue from its cable division, home to the Fox News channel among others, rose 9.9% in the fourth quarter, accounting for more than half of the company’s total revenue.

Domestic advertising sales in the cable business rose 9%.

Total net income attributable to shareholders jumped to $567 million, or 30 cents per share, from $87 million, or 4 cents per share, helped by a tax benefit.

According to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S, Fox earned 38 cents per share excluding certain items, just ahead of analysts average estimate of 37 cents per share.

The company’s adjusted revenue rose 7.1% rise to $6.65 billion in quarter ended June 30.

Fox News chief Roger Ailes, who built the news channel into a money-making ratings powerhouse, resigned in July, following allegations of sexual harassment, sparking concerns among investors.