NEW YORK (AP) – The New York Times plans to reduce the number of standalone sections of the New York metropolitan editions of the newspaper, a move designed to save money by cutting labor costs.

No job cuts are expected as part of the changes announced Friday, though overtime expenses for employees at the New York Times Co.’s printing plant in Queens are expected to drop significantly, said spokeswoman Catherine Mathis.

The paper announced in a note to employees that the metro section will be folded into the paper’s main news section, which includes national and international stories, for the Monday-Saturday editions.

The business and sports sections will be combined in Tuesday-Friday editions.

The changes will take effect Oct. 6 and won’t lead to reductions in the amount of space devoted to metro or sports coverage. The changes make the New York editions of the paper look like the national edition of the paper.

“We are not reducing the space devoted to metro or sports news,” Arthur Sulzberger Jr., the paper’s publisher, said in the note to staff. “This is simply a way to produce the paper more efficiently.”

The savings, which the paper would describe only as “significant,” come from eliminating an early shift in the printing plant on certain days.

The paper added that the changes will allow the Times to add a standalone arts section in the Saturday paper and extend some deadlines for stories to be submitted for publication.

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