Buenos Aires Herald stops presses on daily edition after 140 years

(Reuters) - The Buenos Aires Herald published its last daily edition after 140 years on Wednesday, blaming tough economic conditions and a broad shift among readers to digital media. The Herald, which was founded in 1876 by a Scottish resident of Argentina just as waves of European immigrants arrived to settle in the country, will switch to a weekly edition. The paper had called itself the only English language daily newspaper in print in Latin America, "The Herald has been facing difficulties for a while now," the newspaper said in its editorial on Wednesday. "Though our future incarnation has been painted as a new challenge and an exciting offering to the market, it would be foolish to deny that such a dramatic change comes at a huge cost, or that it also reflects a media industry in crisis." It referred to both international trends of readers migrating toward digital media, and local economic conditions as contributing to the move. Most of its journalists will lose their jobs, it said, with 14 staff leaving on Wednesday. The Buenos Aires Herald, closely associated with Argentina's British and, in later years, U.S. community, won plaudits for its coverage of the "disappeared" - people who were forcibly abducted, tortured and often murdered by the state - during the 1976-1983 military dictatorship. Much of the rest of Argentina's media stayed silent, fearing repercussions, and Herald staff themselves faced threats that led some to leave the country. The Herald is majority-owned by the Indalo Group conglomerate and belongs to the same stable as local financial paper Ambito Financiero. (Writing by Rosalba O'Brien; Editing by Frances Kerry)