Moody's Investors Service has a message to the newspaper publishing industry: Get out of the printing business as soon as possible.
Moody's has analysed the industry's costs and concluded that 14% are for content creation, 16% for advertising sales and 70% for printing, distribution and corporate costs.
The result is what Moody's calls a "structural disconnect." But the service, which grades the credit with debt implications for the business, isn't in the shut-the-press camp. It recognizes that as economically impractical.
Rather, it advocates a hybrid model of greater emphasis on digital and an outsourcing of printing and distribution.