UPDATE 3-Dow Jones exploring sale of indexes business-WSJ


By : * Dow Jones talking to buyers about indexes
Date posted :2009-08-21 18:56:00

* Talks could lead to sale or joint venture (Adds background)

NEW YORK, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Dow Jones & Co Inc has been talking to potential buyers about the sale of its stock market index business, including the Dow Jones industrial average .DJI, the company's Wall Street Journal reported on its website.

WSJ.com, citing people familiar with the matter, reported on Friday that Goldman Sachs (GS.N) is leading the discussions on behalf of Dow Jones, a division of Rupert Murdoch's News Corp (NWSA.O), since it was purchased in 2007 for $5.7 billion.

Since then, Murdoch has come under criticism for paying such a hefty price for a publishing company whose businesses have suffered from the sharp drop in ad sales. Earlier this year, News Corp wrote down $2.8 billion in Dow Jones' value.

Even though the index business is not dependent on advertising -- making it a steadier revenue source for Dow Jones during downturns -- industry analysts never felt it was much favored by Murdoch, a passionate backer of newspapers and one of the best-known media moguls.


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