CHTR
Charter Communications, Inc.NASDAQ
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  • Wed, Nov. 9, 11:34 AM
    • While Time Warner is trading lower as investors digest a slimmer chance of a buyout by AT&T under a Trump administration, Sprint (NYSE:S) -- a company long thought to again become a merger prospect after a change in the White House -- is up 12.5% and hitting two-year highs today.
    • Its oft-discussed merger matchup partner, T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS) is up 3.8%.
    • Meanwhile, changes are likely coming to the FCC, Wells Fargo argues: It will at least be more conservative, if not working under new leadership soon; expecting Chairman Tom Wheeler to stay a full term is "no longer realistic."
    • "If the rhetoric of those surrounding Trump’s campaign rings true, we can expect a Republican FCC to make a big push to roll back some of the regulations put in place under President Obama such as the Title II/Net Neutrality rules," writes analyst Jennifer Fritzsche. "There may also be a push to roll back some or all of what the FCC just did on privacy."
    • "It’s unclear whether Chairman Wheeler will be able to act on the open items related to Business Data Services or set top box reform before he departs and if he does not, some suggest a Republican FCC will reverse course on these two items. There is also a big question on how a Trump FCC will view transactions including the recently announced T/TWX merger and the LVLT/CTL transaction."
    • LVLT +0.4%; CTL +0.5%. TWX -1%. Names tied to net neutrality: T, VZ, CMCSA, CHTR, OTCPK:ATCEY, CTL, FTR, CCOI, DISH.
    | Wed, Nov. 9, 11:34 AM | 219 Comments
  • Wed, May 18, 7:15 PM
    • Finishing a money shuffle tied to today's closure of Charter's $56B buyout of Time Warner Cable and $10B purchase of Bright House Networks, Liberty Interactive (QVCA -0.5%) has completed a $2.4B investment in family company Liberty Broadband (LBRDA +0.2%).
    • That partly fed Liberty Broadband's purchase of $5B of stock in New Charter (NASDAQ:CHTR). Liberty Interactive got newly issued shares of Liberty Broadband Series C common stock at $56.23/share.
    • The two Libertys exchanged their shares of TWC stock one-for-one for shares of New Charter, and Liberty Interactive granted Liberty Broadband a proxy and right of first refusal to its new shares.
    • Liberty Interactive ends up with 42.68M shares of Liberty Broadband Class C, and 5.36M shares of New Charter Class A.
    • Now read Seeking Alpha's Market Challenge: Cable Deals »
    | Wed, May 18, 7:15 PM | 4 Comments
  • Wed, May 18, 10:05 AM
    • Charter Communications (CHTR +0.2%) has closed its long-in-the-works $56B takeover of Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and a $10B buyout of Bright House Networks, creating the country's second-biggest cable company.
    • Charter has inched up to a new 52-week high this morning. Shares have risen 24.5% over the past 12 months.
    • As planned, TWC shareholders get either $100/share or $115/share depending on which New Charter exchange ratio they chose.
    • Meanwhile, at the TWC closing, Liberty Broadband (LBRDA +1%) bought $4.3B of newly issued shares of Charter at $195.70/share (Charter's closing price on May 20, 2015) including the impact of the merger exchange ratio. Tied to the Bright House closing, Liberty Broadband bought $700M of new Charter shares at $191.33/share including exchange impact.
    • Charter will continue to be led by Tom Rutledge, serving as chairman, president and CEO. Charter's board will have 13 directors, including seven independent directors, two designated by Bright House's owner Advance/Newhouse, and three designated by Liberty Broadband (including John Malone and Greg Maffei).
    • Previously: Arrivederci 'Time Warner Cable'; company to be called Charter (May. 17 2016)
    | Wed, May 18, 10:05 AM
  • Tue, May 17, 6:27 PM
    • On the verge of closing its multibillion-dollar deal, Charter Communications (CHTR -0.1%) confirms it will phase out the brand "Time Warner Cable" (TWC -0.1%) over time, as well as that of Bright House Networks, being acquired at the same time.
    • As always, while it will take time for changes to become more apparent, "the company will be called Charter and the products and services will be marketed under the ‘Spectrum’ brand,” says spokesman Alex Dudley.
    • It's the chance to get rid of a brand that earned hatred from consumers who complained about poor service. In the American Customer Satisfaction Index, the company's pay TV service tied cable peer Mediacom with the worst overall rank across any industry (scoring 51 out of 100 points; Charter scored a 63 in pay TV). TWC's 58 in broadband was one better than Charter's score of 57, though.
    • The deal will make Charter the No. 2 cable operator, behind Comcast.
    • Now read Seeking Alpha's Market Challenge: Cable Deals »
    | Tue, May 17, 6:27 PM | 1 Comment
  • Fri, May 13, 10:43 AM
    • Following a final regulatory click in California yesterday, Charter Communications (CHTR -0.8%) says it will close on its acquisitions of Time Warner Cable (TWC -0.4%) and Bright House Networks on Wednesday.
    • Some movement in TWC's trading price may be attributable to investors sorting out the math involved in their part. At closing, what TWC stockholders (aside from Liberty Broadband and Liberty Interactive) will receive depends on which of two options they chose.
    • In "option A," they get $100 in cash and shares in New Charter equivalent to 0.5409 shares of legacy Charter for each TWC share. Option B gets them $115/cash and New Charter shares equivalent to 0.4562 share of legacy Charter for each TWC share.
    • Actual shares of New Charter received would be determined by multiplying one of those exchange ratios with the parent merger exchange ratio of 0.9042 (number of New Charter shares that legacy Charter shareholders get for each legacy share).
    • The exchange agent estimates that of 285M share of TWC common, 183M made a valid election and 180M of those chose option A, with the other 3M choosing option B; shares that didn't choose in time will receive option A.
    • Now read Time Warner Cable And Charter Communications Merger: What You Need To Know »
    | Fri, May 13, 10:43 AM
  • Wed, May 11, 3:21 PM
    • Just a day ahead of what could be the final milestone in Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) near-$90B in deals for Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and Bright House Networks, a watchdog at California's Public Utilities Commission is pointing to deficiencies in the proposed conditions, CTFN reports.
    • The PUC has been set for a Thursday vote on the deals -- and with FCC approval and a DOJ sign-off in hand, and a California administrative law judge recommending approval, Charter has been champing at the bit to close.
    • But any of the five commissioners can issue a hold on the vote that would kick it to the next scheduled hearing, on May 26.
    • Ana Maria Johnson with the Office of Ratepayer Advocates is telling CTFN that the ALJ's conditions are "insufficient" on data caps, broadband deployment, and forced arbitration of disputes.
    • Among other things, Johnson notes that the FCC conditions prevent New Charter from imposing data caps for seven years from closing, while the ALJ's conditions call for three years. "It shouldn’t be less than what the FCC requires," she says.
    • Now read Seeking Alpha's Market Challenge: Cable Deals »
    | Wed, May 11, 3:21 PM | 3 Comments
  • Fri, May 6, 3:22 PM
    • Following reports yesterday of a majority in favor, the FCC confirms it has granted approval with conditions to Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) acquisitions of Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and Bright House Networks.
    • TWC is up 0.1% on the day; CHTR down 0.2%.
    • Intense last-minute lobbying over conditions that would be imposed on Charter accompanied news that agency head Tom Wheeler was getting support for a draft order approving the deals, which the FCC valued at $78B (for TWC) and $10.4B (for Bright House).
    • Final conditions won't be known until details emerge, but the broad outlines were in place for seven years of restrictions designed to protect online video, improve network buildout and forbid usage-based pricing and data caps.
    | Fri, May 6, 3:22 PM | 1 Comment
  • Thu, May 5, 12:19 PM
    • FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has a majority with him in approving Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) acquisitions of Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and Bright House Networks, Reuters reports.
    • TWC is up 0.5%; CHTR up 0.7%.
    • Republican Commissioner Michael O'Rielly and Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel joined with Wheeler in a vote for the deals with conditions, sources said. Last week, Wheeler circulated a draft order recommending approval of the deals after working with the Department of Justice, which also signed off on the purchases.
    • O'Rielly dissented in part, Reuters says, which might mean an alteration to the final conditions. Existing conditions include measures for seven years that are designed to protect online video, improve network buildout and forbid usage-based pricing and data caps.
    • With the FCC reportedly in line, next Thursday's vote at the California Public Utilities Commission may be the final hurdle on what has been a long track toward the multibillion-dollar acquisitions.
    • Now read Seeking Alpha's Market Challenge: Cable Deals »
    | Thu, May 5, 12:19 PM
  • Thu, Apr. 28, 1:26 PM
    • In the Q1 earnings call for Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR), CEO Tom Rutledge said the new company (after acquiring Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks in deals valued by the government at $78B and $10.4B respectively) will drop the Communications and simply be "Charter."
    • With federal approvals coming along, Rutledge now hopes to close within a few days of a May 12 vote at the California Public Utilities Commission, where an administrative law judge has recommended approval of the deal with conditions.
    • Full integration will take somewhat longer, though -- likely until the end of 2018. Changing pricing and packaging of the new customers will follow a transition to two-way digital cable across its new footprint, comprising 36M passings.
    • Shares in Charter are up 2.8% today despite an earnings miss driven by heavier financing costs tied to the company's deals. TWC is up 1.5% after its Q1 beat.
    • Now read Cable Cowboy Ropes Deal »
    | Thu, Apr. 28, 1:26 PM
  • Mon, Apr. 25, 3:04 PM
    • Confirming earlier reports, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler circulated a draft order recommending approval of Charter's (NASDAQ:CHTR) deals for Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and Bright House Networks, and the Justice Dept. approved the deals as well (with conditions).
    • CHTR is up 3.2%; TWC has gained 3.5%. The Justice Dept. valued Charter's takeover of TWC at $78B; the takeover of Bright House, at $10.4B.
    • Wheeler laid out conditions good for seven years to protect online video. If approved, "an additional 2M customer locations will have access to a high-speed connection. At least 1M of those connections will be in competition with another high-speed broadband provider in the market served," partly to "demonstrate the viability of one broadband provider overbuilding another."
    • Working with the DOJ, he specified seven-year conditions: New Charter won't be able to charge usage-based prices or impose data caps (it doesn't now). The combined company will be prohibited from charging interconnection fees (such as to online video providers). And it can't set video programming terms that could hurt online video distributors.
    • Assuming the FCC commissioners approve Wheeler's draft order, the major remaining hurdle is at the California PUC.
    • Now read Time Warner Cable Bucks The Cord-Cutting Trend »
    | Mon, Apr. 25, 3:04 PM | 7 Comments
  • Mon, Apr. 25, 2:25 PM
    • Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) is jumping, +1.9%, as it's set today to receive federal approval of its deals to acquire Time Warner Cable (TWC, $57B) and Bright House Networks ($10.4B), according to various media reports.
    • TWC is on the move as well, up 2.3%.
    • The Justice Dept. is pursuing approval of a settlement with conditions on Charter to protect the burgeoning online video market, while FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler will reportedly circulate an order approving the deal with conditions to the other commissioners later today.
    • The FCC's 180-day "shot clock" to review the deal expired March 25.
    • Now read Charter: An Attractive Idiosyncratic Risk In A Market Full Of Uncertainties »
    | Mon, Apr. 25, 2:25 PM
  • Fri, Apr. 15, 1:07 PM
    • Charter Communications (CHTR +0.8%) is continuing to set up financing as its deals for Time Warner Cable (TWC +0.8%) and Bright House Networks move forward.
    • The company priced $300M in senior unsecured notes, 5.5% notes due 2026, over and above $1.2B in similar notes priced on April 7. Those notes will be issued at 100.375% of aggregate principal.
    • The offering of the new notes will close April 21, concurrent with the previous $1.2B.
    • With an administrative law judge in California recommending that state approve the deal with conditions, the major hurdle remaining may be the FCC, the agency that kiboshed Comcast's deal for TWC.
    • Charter chief Tom Rutledge has been meeting with FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler and trying to secure approval for the deal as soon as possible.
    • Now read Time Warner Cable Bucks The Cord-Cutting Trend »
    | Fri, Apr. 15, 1:07 PM
  • Mon, Apr. 11, 6:20 PM
    | Mon, Apr. 11, 6:20 PM
  • Wed, Mar. 23, 3:58 PM
    • After word last week that a draft order was close, the FCC is not expected to act this week on Charter Communications' (CHTR -0.6%) bid to acquire Time Warner Cable (TWC -0.2%), Reuters says.
    • That's with the agency's informal 180-day "shot clock" expiring on Friday. The FCC had paused the review period before, and it often states that the public interest outweighs any hewing to the informal timeline.
    • With OKs from shareholders and most states, the merger's fate rests only with the FCC and California. last week the FCC was expected to circulate a draft order from Chairman Tom Wheeler approving the deal with conditions.
    • Previously: WSJ: FCC drafting approval for $55B Charter-TWC merger (Mar. 15 2016)
    | Wed, Mar. 23, 3:58 PM
  • Tue, Mar. 15, 8:42 PM
    • FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is set to circulate a draft order to approve Charter Communications' (NASDAQ:CHTR) $55B agreement to acquire Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) as soon as this week, The Wall Street Journal reports.
    • Unsurprisingly, the approval is set to come with key conditions, notably supporting Wheeler's hot-button issue of supporting online video. It might bar the combined company from entering contracts with content producers that restrict them from offering programming online.
    • Conditions likely also include requiring new Charter to invest in spreading broadband access to more homes, and locking down issues that Charter's already agreed to (avoiding data caps and usage-based billing, and waiving interconnection fees -- an issue that won the deal support from Netflix).
    • A draft order would likely set up a few weeks of process before a final approval.
    • Previously: NYC approves franchise transfers in Charter-TWC merger (Mar. 09 2016)
    • Previously: California PUC watchdog: Reject Charter-Time Warner Cable deal (Mar. 04 2016)
    | Tue, Mar. 15, 8:42 PM | 7 Comments
  • Wed, Mar. 9, 7:25 PM
    | Wed, Mar. 9, 7:25 PM | 1 Comment