Murdoch may go after NYTimes

Rupert Murdoch's counterintuitive quest to invest in print media helped drive away longtime lieutenant Peter Chernin. And now that Chernin can't intercede, does Murdoch want to follow News Corp.'s $5 billion buyout of Dow Jones by gobbling up the struggling New York Times Co.? The answer appears to be yes, as impossible as present economic conditions make it for most deals of any kind to get done.

What's more, incredulous News Corp. insiders say Murdoch's love of print media is so fervent that he's also been talking about a play for the Los Angeles Times, which could make easier prey for several reasons. There's also the fact that the Times and the Wall Street Journal compete nationally, and the prospect of meshing the Times' left-leaning outlook with the conservative approach of the Journal and the Post. Technically, a News Corp. transaction for another paper is possible, given that the company has more than $2 billion in free cash flow in the current fiscal year, even amid continuing erosion of the newspaper biz. more 

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