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News Corp’s digital real estate division drove profits at the owner of newspapers including The Sun and Wall Street Journal, although an impairment charge related to its Australian print operations pushed the quarter into the red.

Second quarter revenues fell from $2.16bn to $2.12bn, which reflected a negative impact from currency fluctuations. The company incurred a loss of $290m compared to net income last time of $62m.*

Robert Thomson, chief executive, hailed the company’s investment in digital real estate services, saying its division was “well on the way to becoming the largest contributor to our profitability”.

He warned of “continued headwinds” in newspaper advertising but also pointed to an increase in Wall Street Journal subscriptions, with the newspaper now having 2.1m paying readers, with more than half being digital subscriptions.

Adjusted earnings per share were $0.19, compared with $0.20 last time.

*This post has been updated to say that the loss is compared to net income last time of $62m.

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