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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 November, 2003, 08:28 GMT
Daily Mail sees profits improve
Man reading Daily Mail newspaper
The paper has suffered from an advertising slump
The publisher of the Daily Mail, Evening Standard and Loot has seen its profits edge higher, despite tough trading conditions.

Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT) said profits for the year to September rose to 185.5m, up 3m on 2002.

DGMT added that national advertising was "satisfactory", up 1.7% in October.

However, while it said it had made a good start to the financial year, the firm added: "It remains too early to call the turn in this market."

The group also said it was watching developments closely at the Telegraph group, whose newspapers might be put up for sale.


The Telegraph group, owned by Hollinger International, has been rocked by the news that its controlling shareholder, media tycoon Conrad Black and other executives had accepted $32m (19m) in unauthorised payments.

Hollinger said, after an internal inquiry into the affair, that Lord Black was paid $7.2m.

Lord Black and the other executives have agreed to pay back the cash by June 2004, Hollinger added.

Daily Mail finance director Peter Williams said: "We will be looking at the effect on us and on somebody else buying the business and what effect that might have on us."

Meanwhile, DMGT added that at its regional newspaper division, Northcliffe, sales remained strong while advertising had grown 6%.

But, its Associated Press division - which includes its national titles such as the Mail on Sunday - saw trading profit fall 10m to 70m due to increased revenue investment at its London title Evening Standard.

Shares in Daily Mail and General Trust shares fell, shedding 7 pence by close to 616.5 pence.

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