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Economy hitting cable stocks

Thu, 10/16/2008 - 8:40am
Brian Santo

Economic worries are hitting the cable industry, dropping stock prices precipitously, despite a collective rally yesterday.

The conventional wisdom is that when the economy staggers, consumers hunker down at home and watch more TV. So when the economy goes south, cable stocks might be expected to be inoculated against big sell-offs.

Not this time. In the past two weeks, cable stock values have been dropping, and despite that brief one-day rally at the beginning of the week, continue to sink.

A month ago, Comcast was up above $20, Cablevision above $26, Time Warner Cable above $14.

Comcast rallied from $15.36 at the beginning of the week to just above $17, but at mid-day today was trading around $14.50. Over the same span, Cablevision spiked from $16.88 to $18.42, but in mid-day trading was back down around $16.50. TWC likewise was down to $9.19, rallied to $10.49, but had dropped to around $9.50.

Big or small, U.S. or Canadian, incumbent or over-builder, it has been making no difference. Most of cable is apparently being looked at the same. Nearly everyone’s stock is experiencing the same pattern – including Knology, Mediacom, Rogers, Shaw and SureWest.

More Broadband Direct:

• Panasonic serves up tru2way TVs in 2 Comcast markets

• Economy hitting cable stocks

• Comcast follows through on offering 1,000 HD choices

• NCTA/SCTE open call for papers

• Verizon gains approval for safety plan on FiOS installs

• Verizon ups service offerings in Calif., Mass., Pa.

• Dish adds 11 MPEG-4 markets

• Qwest expands its Ethernet footprint

• FCC's Martin throws support toward use of white spaces

• Broadband Briefs for 10/16/08

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