Grey posts lower net income, higher billings

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New York--Grey Advertising Monday posted first-quarter net income of $107,000, compared with $5.0 million for the same period in 1998. Basic and diluted earnings per common share were 20 cents, compared with basic earnings of $4.50 per share and diluted earnings of $3.91 per share for the same period in 1998. Grey blamed the decline in net income on reduced commissions and fees at its general advertising agency operations, in part resulting from deferrals of expected client expenditures, the loss of certain business in 1998 that has yet to be replaced, and continuing weakness in selected international markets. Grey reported gross billings of $1.52 billion for the first quarter of 1999, compared with $1.43 billion for the same period in 1998. Income from commissions and fees increased to $227.9 million, from $215.7 million.
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