Retransmission fees pay off for News Corp. (Nasdaq: NWSA) in fiscal 1Q

News Corp. (Nasdaq: NWSA) has confirmed what cable operators already knew--or at least strongly suspected: playing hardball with retrans agreements is good for the bottom line.

The Rupert Murdoch-run media giant reported a 36 percent net income increase in its fiscal first quarter and COO Chase Carey said it was all thanks to network and cable groups, especially Fox's ability to get paid for local TV stations.

"These deals are critical to driving Fox's financial success," Carey said during an earnings conference call.

For the financial types, operating income for the Cable Network Programming group was $659 million for the quarter, up $513 million from a year earlier. And that didn't even include what Fox managed to wrest from Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) and Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH) in recently closed agreements.

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