Gannett Co. on Tuesday abruptly ended its six-month effort to acquire Tronc, the owner of the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Orlando Sentinel, Baltimore Sun and several other newspapers.

The deal would have extended the footprint of Gannett, the nation’s largest newspaper company, and marked a major consolidation in an industry beleaguered by technological challenges and declining revenues. But it was hampered by a last-minute withdrawal of support last week by bankers expected to finance the transaction.

Tronc shares fell sharply in Nasdaq trading Tuesday to $10.19, a decline of more than 15%. The stock had been trading at $17 a share as recently as last week, before reports that the financing for Gannett’s bid was in jeopardy.

Gannett shares initially rose on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday, but shortly before 10 a.m. Pacific time they were down 1.4% to $7.66. Gannett investors had been wary of the viability of the Tronc deal, however, especially after Gannett announced disappointing quarterly financial results last week. Gannett shares are down more than 50% in the last six months.

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