Digest: Dow OK, Tribune selling
Shareholders with more than 50% of the voting power in Dow Jones have approved the financial news provider's sale to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., Dow Jones flagship the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday on its Web site. It cited a count of proxy votes ahead of today's Dow Jones shareholder meeting. News Corp. this year offered $60 per share, or more than $5 billion, for Dow Jones. The deal is expected to close shortly after the shareholder meeting.
Tribune said Wednesday that it expects to close a sale of the Chicago Cubs and a 25% stake in a local Comcast sports network in the first half. It also reaffirmed that Sam Zell will take Tribune private in an $8.2 billion buyout by year's end. Named as potential buyers of the Cubs has been a group of investors led by John Canning, chairman of private-equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners. Analysts have said the Cubs could fetch as much as $1 billion if packaged with Wrigley Field and related real estate, which also is for sale.
HMV cuts loss
U.K. music and books retailer HMV Group said Wednesday that it is ready for the key holiday shopping season as it unveiled a slightly narrowed first-half loss. The company reported a pretax loss before exceptional items of £28.7 million ($58.8 million) for the six months ending Oct. 27, down from a £29.2 million loss a year ago. "The most important days and weeks of our financial calendar are still ahead of us, and our stores and Web sites are very well prepared for Christmas," CEO Simon Fox said. He cited strong record sales for Leona Lewis and Led Zeppelin, as well as such DVD best-sellers as "The Simpsons Movie" and "Transformers."