Although President Donald Trump frequently derides The New York Times as “failing,” his criticisms have given the newspaper a boost.
“This is one of those situations where all publicity is good publicity,” said CNBC’s Jim Cramer. “Every time Trump criticizes the Times, he’s making it more relevant, and I think that translates directly into more subscriptions.”
Last week, The New York Times reported quarterly earnings that beat Wall Street’s expectations, driven by strong digital subscription growth. The stock is up more than 50 percent this year.
The paper has bucked the downward trend in the print media industry by focusing on its online business.
The Times launched its online paywall in 2011, beginning the transition to a “subscription-first strategy” instead of advertising, as CEO Mark Thompson noted. Subscription revenue accounted for two-thirds of total revenue in the most recent quarter, with the newspaper adding over 200,000 new online subscribers.
According to Cramer, the “highly charged political spectacles” that have characterized the Trump presidency have fueled subscription growth at the New York Times.
“This administration generates a ton of news,” the “Mad Money” host said. “That helps sell subscriptions.”
Moments like Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court hearings and the upcoming midterm elections have made news outlets even more valuable to the public.
While Cramer is bullish on the Times, he wouldn’t buy the stock at its current price. He recommends investors buy the stock if it falls 5 or 10 percent.
“You don’t want to chase the stock after an epic run,” Cramer said. “Let it come to you.”
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