Tribune announced in July that it planned to separate its newspapers from the company's other assets. The new owners of Tribune intend to focus on the more profitable television and Internet properties and spin off its eight daily newspapers into a stand-alone company.
A Tribune spokesman confirmed that the company has started a budget review process. Newspaper managers have been asked to look for efficiencies.
"We're in the process, as we are every year at this time, of looking at the budgets for all of our businesses," Tribune spokesman Gary Weitman said. "Everything is on the table. We're looking at how to put our publishing businesses on the best possible footing for the long term."
Late Thursday, Chicago business blogger Robert Feder reported that Tribune Chief Executive Peter Liguori had told managers to identify $100 million in cuts to take effect Dec. 1.
Weitman said the report was not accurate.
"No targets for expense reduction have been issued," Weitman said. He also said the company had not arrived at a number of job cuts.
Jennifer T. Humes, CT1 Media's director of marketing and communications, referred all questions on possible reductions to Tribune. CT1 Media comprises The Courant and sister Tribune TV station FoxCT, which combined newsrooms in 2009.
Asked Friday morning about how reductions might affect The Courant specifically, Weitman reiterated that, overall, Tribune had set no targets for expense reductions and given no deadlines for them.
Late last month, Tribune reported that earnings tumbled in the second quarter of this year as revenue dropped sharply in its TV broadcast division and advertising continued to decline at its newspapers.
The company reported net income of $66.3 million in the three months that ended June 30, which represented a 61.2 percent plunge from $170.8 million in the year-earlier period.
Revenue fell 10.5 percent to $730.2 million, while pretax income skidded 39.7 percent to $110.4 million.
The Chicago company emerged from four years of bankruptcy protection in late December. Liguori, a former Discovery Communications and Fox executive, was hired as chief executive in January.
In July, Tribune announced that it was acquiring 19 television stations in a $2.7 billion deal. Soon afterward, the company said it would spin off The Times, Chicago Tribune, The Courant, Baltimore Sun and other papers into a separate entity known as Tribune Publishing Co. Until that time, Tribune had been taking steps to sell the newspapers.
In the past three years, the company has slashed about 2,200 jobs.
Tribune currently employs about 11,500 workers.
A Courant staff report is included in this story.