Yahoo Rumored to Buy New York Times! Wait, What?

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Is Yahoo about to buy the New York Times Company?

The unexpected rumor has appeared online via a three sentence story on Business Insider‘s website, referencing a tweet from Benzinga.com, which claims to bring readers “business news before it’s news.”

(MORE: Yahoo, Facebook Want to Find Out if It’s a ‘Small World’ After All)

If true, Yahoo has chosen a good time to buy. NYTC stock hit a new 52-week low earlier this month, with analysts concerned about deteriorating net income and only slight growth in the company’s earnings per share. Yahoo itself has seen a 23% revenue decline recently, due to what CEO Carol Bartz called “comprehensive changes… made in our sales organization to position ourselves for more rapid display growth in the future.”

Would a possible NYTC purchase be part of that rapid growth plan? Yahoo has already purchased TV check-in service IntoNow and online ad alliance 5to1 this year in its attempt to become more competitive with Google, Facebook and AOL in the display ad market. They’ve also partnered with both Belo Corp. and Gannett for local TV station ad sales, but wouldn’t buying the New York Times Company—which also owns the International Herald Tribune and Boston Globe as well as multiple other newspapers, websites and even a minority stake in the Boston Red Sox—seem like part of a much more ambitious strategy?

Sure…if any of this is true, anyway, and not just a wild rumor placed out there to see if NYTC stock jumps.

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Graeme McMillan is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @Graemem or on Facebook at Facebook/Graeme.McMillan. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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