OTTAWA - Canada's federal regulator says commercial AM and FM radio stations generally produced lower revenues and profits in 2009, although French-language FM stations managed to buck the trend.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission said Thursday that overall profits before interest and taxes tumbled to $272 million from $334.9 million in 2008.
At English FM radio, profits before interest were $234.1 million, a drop from $299.9 million in the previous year.
However, French FM radio's profits before interest moved higher to $35.4 million from $33.3 million.
Revenues overall fell 5.2 per cent to $1.5 billion in the year ended Aug. 31, 2009.
English-language FM radio revenues were down 5.8 per cent to just under $1 billion, while French-language FM radio reported slightly higher revenues of $227 million.
AM radio station revenues were down 7.4 per cent to just over $300 million.
The CRTC noted that the number of AM stations continues to decline across the country, with seven going off the air in 2009.
AM and FM radio stations classified as "ethnic" reported revenues that dropped 1.1 per cent to $38.8 million. Profits rose to $2.2 million from $1.7 million.
The entire radio industry employed 10,191 people and paid salaries of $632 million in the period, the broadcast regulator said.