Wall Street Journal Cuts 25 Newsroom Jobs, Shutters Fashion Group

03/08/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

NEW YORK — The Wall Street Journal, one of the last major U.S. daily newspapers to avoid deep cuts to its news gathering operations amid a historic industry downturn, is trimming about two dozen newsroom jobs.

Robert Christie, a spokesman for the newspaper's parent company, Dow Jones & Co., said the Journal will make cuts to both its reporting and editing staff through a combination of layoffs and buyouts as well as eliminating open positions.

In a memo to staff obtained by The Associated Press, Journal managing editor Robert Thomson said the newsroom has already lost 11 reporters through attrition, but 14 more jobs will be eliminated in a new restructuring effort.

Thomson said the paper's New York-based fashion and retail group will be shuttered, with some reporters and editors shifted to other bureaus.

The Los Angeles and Boston bureaus will each lose a job as well as the law, health and real estate groups in New York.

Thomson said there will be no cuts at Dow Jones Newswires.

"It is obvious to you all that we are in the midst of an unprecedented economic downturn," he said in the memo. "We are also in the midst of an unprecedented increase in our readership, in print and online, but a precipitous decline in print advertising revenue has forced a close examination of our structures and of our costs."

Newspapers across the country have been laying off staff at a precipitous rate as revenue dwindles, hit hard by the recession and a steady migration to the Web by both readers and advertisers.

But the Journal's overall head count has largely been spared.

The paper was bought out by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. just over a year ago. Dozens of jobs had been cut as the print and Internet operations merged. But with the Journal beefing up its political and general interest news coverage, the newsroom grew by about 20 positions to roughly 760.