Blog Post

Dow Jones Shareholder Plans Sale

One of Dow Jones’s top shareholders is selling shares.
The publisher of the Wall Street Journal said Monday that a trust established by the late Jane Bancroft Cook, a former Dow Jones director, has adopted a pre-arranged sale plan under the SEC’s Rule 10b5-1. These plans are designed to allow holders to sell stock without fear of being accused of benefiting from insider trading. They are very common among tech companies including Google and Microsoft.
Under the terms of the plan, the Trust will sell 10,000 shares per trading day starting November 6, New York-based Dow Jones said in a statement. The plan ends June 1, 2007. Sales under the plan will be affected if Dow Jones’s share price is greater than or equal to $30 and will end earlier once 885,200 shares are sold. It wasn’t immediately clear how much of the trust’s shares this equals. Proceeds from the sale will be used for the trust’s charitable purposes, Dow Jones said.
Dow Jones has been rumored to be a takeover target for years. So far, efforts to sell the company have run into resistance from the Bancroft family, descendant of Charles Barron, the man who acquired the company in 1902 following the death of co-founder Charles Dow. Media reports have indicated for years that the Bancrofts are unhappy about the decline in their shares. The family has always distanced itself from this talk. Nonetheless, the speculation hasn’t gone away, particularly given the recent upheaval at Tribune and Knight-Ridder.