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News Corp. stock sold

Rupe pockets $78 million from sale

SYDNEY — News Corp. chairman and chief exec Rupert Murdoch has pocketed small change of about A$130 million ($78 million) from a selldown of preferred stock in his global media conglomerate, the media titan’s Oz newspaper the Australian reported Thursday.

Notices lodged with the Australian Stock Exchange late Wednesday showed Murdoch holds 604.2 million ordinary shares (a 30.6% stake) and 281.3 preferred shares (15.8%) via family companies Cruden Investments and Kayarem, revealing a selldown of the non-voting preferred shares from previous holdings of 300.7 million shares (16.4%).

News Corp. was valued at about $5.5 billion at Wednesday’s closing prices, with ordinary shares at $6.51 and preferred at $5.53. Recently, the stock has been trading near record highs owing to dramatic plunges in the value of the Aussie dollar, which will swell earnings when repatriated.

About 95% of News Corp.’s profits are reported in U.S. dollars or British pounds.

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