AT&T Inc. (T) - NYSE
  • Tue, Feb. 23, 3:24 PM
    • With a veritable parade under way toward 5G wireless testing, T-Mobile (TMUS +1.1%) says it's going to conduct field trials of the next-gen technology in the second half of 2016 with partners Ericsson and Nokia.
    • "T-Mobile and Nokia are using pre-selected spectrum in the 28 GHz band to trial and test 5G components and accompanying use cases that support massive bandwidth capacity and virtual zero latency," the companies said.
    • "Building on investments we've made to deliver America's fastest 4G LTE, this puts us on the path to real 5G use cases once 5G consumer smartphones are available in the 2020+ timeframe," said Neville Ray, who had said during the company's earnings call: "I think folks have seen some of the early announcements and Verizon trying to move and say that they're going to be the first to 5G, well, it's kind of BS to be honest. We're there in the race. We'll make sure that there's nothing in the 5G space that we don't deliver to our customers on or before our competition does."
    • Yesterday, AT&T (T -0.5%) boasted that DirecTV would give it the advantage over Verizon (VZ -0.8%) in the race to 5G, to which a Verizon spokesman replied: "AT&T has followed us in every turn of technology -- wireless and wired -- and they will again with 5G."
    • Previously: AT&T: DirecTV gives us 5G advantage over Verizon (Feb. 22 2016)
    • Previously: FCC filing: AT&T preps 5G testing in Austin (Feb. 04 2016)
    | Tue, Feb. 23, 3:24 PM | 8 Comments
  • Mon, Feb. 22, 7:51 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) is pressing its high-speed case against Comcast and Google Fiber in Tennessee, with plans to offer its 1-Gbps GigaPower service in three Nashville-area cities.
    • That's an expansion of its area efforts and an increased challenge to incumbent Comcast. Customers will be able to choose from single, double and triple play packages, and choose either DirecTV or U-verse for video (though the company seems to be pushing incentives for all its customers to choose DirecTV).
    • As with other GigaPower rollouts, trying to go single-play with the standalone Internet plan will get a $70 price only if they agree to allow AT&T to track Internet usage.
    | Mon, Feb. 22, 7:51 PM
  • Mon, Feb. 22, 3:17 PM
    • In the race to 5G wireless, AT&T (T +0.5%) says it's got an unmatched advantage over rival Verizon (VZ +0.1%) after its acquisition of a large distribution network in the DirecTV deal.
    • At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Chief Strategy Officer John Donovan said the technology -- which promises download speeds of up to 10 Gbps on a network handling billions of devices -- will need a solid fixed line backbone. "We are in a better position because we have a fixed line proposition which is becoming much more interesting now with 5G."
    • Both AT&T and Verizon have pledged trials of the technology this year. For its part, a Verizon spokesman says "AT&T has followed us in every turn of technology -- wireless and wired -- and they will again with 5G."
    • Meanwhile, Verizon has said it demonstrated its 5G field trials for FCC officials including Chairman Tom Wheeler (and CEO Lowell McAdam took the opportunity to urge the FCC to act quickly on making bands above 24 GHz available for mobile broadband). With providers of all kinds entering the market for business broadband, there's no reason to single out some companies for special regulation, McAdam added.
    • AT&T's Donovan added that the company would continue to be "very vocal" in opposition to FCC initiatives to open competition in the $20B television set-top box market.
    • Previously: FCC filing: AT&T preps 5G testing in Austin (Feb. 04 2016)
    • Previously: FCC votes to open set-top box market (Feb. 18 2016)
    • Previously: SK Telecom, Ericsson teaming to pilot 5G networking (Feb. 11 2016)
    | Mon, Feb. 22, 3:17 PM | 18 Comments
  • Mon, Feb. 22, 6:23 AM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) is partnering with Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) to test and optimize how drones perform on LTE connections beyond line of sight, at higher altitudes, or when faced with external interference.
    • The collaboration is designed to show how a network that has primarily been designed to connect devices (such as smartphones) on the ground can be reappropriated for unmanned aerial vehicles.
    | Mon, Feb. 22, 6:23 AM | 4 Comments
  • Mon, Feb. 22, 2:40 AM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) is investing about $10B in its global business solutions division, as it seeks to boost the unit that offers services such as wireless connectivity, cloud storage and security to companies.
    • Roughly half of the money will be spent on a range of enterprise-related projects, including a fiber network in Mexico and projects involving the so-called Internet of Things.
    • According to the Progressive Policy Institute, AT&T is the biggest capital spender in the United States.
    | Mon, Feb. 22, 2:40 AM | 4 Comments
  • Fri, Feb. 19, 12:11 PM
    • AT&T (T -0.6%) has launched an offer to exchange 16 series of notes (some $17B in total) issued by DirecTV for notes issued by AT&T.
    • Overall indebtedness doesn't change with the offer, but Moody's says the exchange is credit positive as it reduces the structural subordination of existing unsecured debt.
    • Holders of the DTV notes that take part will receive equivalent AT&T notes of the same maturity and stated coupon interest.
    • If a large majority of the DTV debt is tendered, Moody's says, it will reduce the amount of debt structurally senior to unsecured AT&T creditors from $37B (27% of total) to around $20B (16% of total).
    | Fri, Feb. 19, 12:11 PM | 6 Comments
  • Thu, Feb. 18, 11:49 AM
    • In a party-line vote, the FCC has voted to proceed on new regulations that will allow for open competition in pay TV set-top boxes.
    • Agency Chairman Tom Wheeler had railed against a market where he says Americans spend $20B on leasing devices from their TV providers, paying rental fees that have jumped 185% since 1994 despite the fact that other consumer electronics have declined 90% in price in the same time frame.
    • The FCC's move could throw open the doors to a new generation of boxes from the likes of Apple and Alphabet as well as TiVo, among others.
    • “This issue is not complex,” Wheeler says, noting that the 1996 Telecommunications Act “explicitly instructed us to assure that there are competitive information devices, be it a box or an app.”
    • Voting on Wheeler's proposal is the start of a process. If a final order goes forward, MVPDs would have to provide information to third parties who could make devices that conformed to a specification to provide service.
    • Pay TV players: CMCSA, TWC, CHTR, CVC/OTCPK:ATCEY, T, DISH, VZ, FTR, CTL
    • Previously: Reports: FCC planning for open competition in set-top boxes (Jan. 27 2016)
    | Thu, Feb. 18, 11:49 AM | 74 Comments
  • Fri, Feb. 5, 4:26 PM
    • Mexico is giving clearance to AT&T (T +1%) and Carlos Slim's America Movil (AMX -2.4%) to take part in a wireless spectrum auction there.
    • The sale process will begin Feb. 15. IFT, the country's telecom regulator, says the two companies can put in bids for 80 MHz of spectrum in a pair of bands: 1710-1780 MHz, and 2110-2180 MHz.
    • The two companies are also competing with Telefonica (TEF +1.1%) in Mexico's tender for a large wholesale mobile network.
    | Fri, Feb. 5, 4:26 PM
  • Thu, Feb. 4, 5:54 PM
    • According to an FCC application, AT&T (NYSE:T) is pursuing a three-year experimental license to test 5G service in Austin, Texas, which might put it on a timeline with competitor Verizon (NYSE:VZ) in pursuing the next-gen wireless standard.
    • The telecom giant wants to do fixed and mobile tests with "various types of experimental wireless equipment" (but from undisclosed providers). The goal is to allow for trials (in the 3.5 GHz, 4 GHz, 15 GHz and 28 GHz bands) before standards are finalized in 2018-2019. A 5G service could provide wireless data speeds comparable to gigabit broadband.
    • Last September, Verizon announced an ambitious timetable that included 5G testing in 2016 followed by "some level of commercial deployment" in 2017; the company's CFO Fran Shammo has promised they would get to 5G first. Observers have assumed commercial rollout wouldn't happen until 2020.
    • This could also put some heat on upcoming spectrum auctions; tests are one thing, but commercial service means a need for more airwaves.
    • Previously: Verizon announces ambitious 5G timetable; to start field tests next year (Sep. 08 2015)
    | Thu, Feb. 4, 5:54 PM | 28 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 3, 7:30 PM
    • Shortly after Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) confirmed it's exploring "additional strategic alternatives" while pushing ahead with a reverse spinoff of its core business, the FT reports Bain, TPG, and other P-E firms are weighing potential bids for core Yahoo. The paper adds AT&T (NYSE:T) and InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IAC) "are also believed to be examining the company."
    • Many firms are expected to make full or partial bids for core Yahoo. CFO Ken Goldman: "A number of companies have said they want to look at us, and there are a number of private equity firms that are interested in looking at us. I’m not saying that we’ve received offers ... I’m saying parties have expressed interest in us. And what we’re saying is that we’ll be open [to] that.”
    • Re/code's Kara Swisher reports Yahoo has hired well-known tech i-banker Frank Quattrone to help it explore options; Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are already on the payroll. "It is clear to us that what is happening inside is very dysfunctional," says an unnamed major investor talking to Swisher.
    • Meanwhile, with a sale effort and job cuts already expected, Yahoo fell below $28 in regular trading following its Q4 report and myriad of job cut, writedown, and strategic review announcements. Weak guidance may have weighed: Yahoo guided in its earnings slides (.pdf) for Q1 GAAP revenue of $1.05B-$1.09B and 2016 revenue of $4.4B-$4.6B, below consensus estimates of $1.14B and $4.78B.

      2016 ex-TAC revenue guidance of $3.4B-$3.6B is below 2015 ex-TAC revenue of $4.09B, which itself was below 2014's $4.4B. Non-GAAP op. income is  expected to drop to $150M-$250M from 2015's $342M and 2014's $755M.
    • Also of note: 1) $230M of Yahoo's $4.46B goodwill writedown was related to the $1.1B Tumblr acquisition. On the earnings call (transcript), Yahoo disclosed Tumblr failed to hit the company's $100M 2015 revenue target. 2) Along with everything else, Yahoo has begun exploring the sale of "non-strategic assets" such as patents and real estate. It estimates such sales could yield $1B-$3B in cash by year's end.
    • Prior Yahoo coverage
    | Wed, Feb. 3, 7:30 PM | 21 Comments
  • Tue, Feb. 2, 9:00 AM
    • January monthly performance was: -3.31%
    • AUM of $1.63B
    • 52-week performance vs. the S&P 500 is: -2%
    • $0.10 in dividends were paid in January
    • Top 10 Holdings as of 12/31/2015: Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM): 3.35%, AT&T Inc (T): 3.15%, Microsoft Corp (MSFT): 3.11%, Apple Inc (AAPL): 2.84%, Verizon Communications Inc (VZ): 2.5%, General Electric Co (GE): 2.36%, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ): 2.21%, Chevron Corp (CVX): 2.2%, Wells Fargo & Co (WFC): 2.06%, Procter & Gamble Co (PG): 1.93%
    | Tue, Feb. 2, 9:00 AM
  • Mon, Feb. 1, 3:56 PM
    • With the DirecTV acquisition in the rear-view mirror and long-term video consolidation plans under way, AT&T (T +0.5%) today is reshuffling execs to address the convergence of video and mobile.
    • Ralph de la Vega, previously chief of mobile, is becoming vice chairman and taking over business and international units, while John Stankey (Internet and TV) is becoming CEO of the entertainment group, and adding mobility to his responsibilities there.
    • De la Vega will continue to run Mexico's wireless unit and will take over DirecTV's Latin American operations from Stankey, while Stankey will take over consumer aspects at the company.
    • Both men will report to CEO Randall Stephenson. Glenn Lurie, who was made chief of the mobility business in 2014, will report to Stankey.
    | Mon, Feb. 1, 3:56 PM
  • Fri, Jan. 29, 2:44 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) is up 1.5% and inching close to a new 52-week high.
    • The stock's at $36.05, just a bit below its high of $36.45, set last June. Moody's has given a Baa1 rating to AT&T's new debt offering, but is retaining a negative outlook on its ratings, expecting pro forma leverage won't change materially.
    • "Moody's anticipates AT&T will require additional capital to support ongoing investments and finance its growing working capital needs," the firm writes. "The negative ratings outlook reflects the risk that AT&T is unable to return to growth within its wireless segment such that leverage is sustained below 3.0x. Merger synergies related to the DirecTV acquisition will relieve some EBITDA pressure, but ongoing weakness in wireless revenues or a large asset purchase could place additional pressure on AT&T's ratings."
    • The company's high capital intensity has worsened with the advent of handset financing, Moody's continues, and it's got weak retained cash flow by maintaining its high dividend.
    • In the earnings call Tuesday, AT&T's chief Randall Stephenson said the company wants to spend the next few years getting debt back to "comfortable" levels before any capital-structure moves like a buyback.
    • Previously: AT&T finishes mixed day as analysts weigh in on earnings (Jan. 27 2016)
    • Previously: AT&T call: Bringing debt back to comfort levels; exploring sponsored content (Jan. 26 2016)
    • Previously: DirecTV purchase boosts AT&T revenues; Business Solutions margins grow (Jan. 26 2016)
    | Fri, Jan. 29, 2:44 PM | 26 Comments
  • Fri, Jan. 29, 2:10 AM
    • Only a couple of years late, Mexico today begins a tender for a large wholesale mobile network originally planned as part of the reforms targeting the dominance of Carlos Slim's America Movil (NYSE:AMX).
    • The winner will have to create a network costing several billion dollars and covering at least 85% of the population -- about 45% of Mexicans have mobile broadband, and only 22% of mobile data goes through 4G LTE networks -- but would get cheap use of high-quality 700 MHz spectrum and a 20-year public-private partnership to build a 4G LTE network that others would rent.
    • The government has decided, however, that the winner won't be able to sublet spectrum -- a freedom that America Movil, Telefonica (NYSE:TEF) and AT&T (NYSE:T) would prefer to have.
    • Mexico will help out with costs by making sites on its buildings available for rent, but to make the venture profitable, skeptical mobile operators will need to agree to become clients on the new network.
    | Fri, Jan. 29, 2:10 AM | 3 Comments
  • Thu, Jan. 28, 7:14 PM
    • FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler says that the agency's look into so-called "zero rating" -- telecom providers exempting some services (sometimes paid) from subscriber limits -- is informational, and that he hasn't attended any meetings on it yet.
    • The talks are at the bureau level, he says: "I am not at these meetings. Nobody from the office of the chairman is in these meetings. They're gathering information and we'll see what happens from there."
    • The agency has been meeting with key providers, including T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS), Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), AT&T (NYSE:T) and surely Verizon (NYSE:VZ), now that it's rolling out its "FreeBee" sponsored data solution.
    • Meanwhile, Republican Commissioners Michael O'Rielly and Ajit Pai are expressing their concerns to the "inquistors" over a procedure they see as unnecessary.
    • Despite swirling concerns over net neutrality, Wheeler has praised T-Mobile's Binge On video streaming offering as "highly innovative and highly competitive."
    • Previously: Verizon informs FCC of sponsored data plans (Jan. 20 2016)
    • Previously: FCC summoning Internet providers to talk data policies (Dec. 17 2015)
    • Previously: FCC chairman: T-Mobile video initiative 'highly competitive' (Nov. 19 2015)
    | Thu, Jan. 28, 7:14 PM
  • Wed, Jan. 27, 7:19 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) closed 0.2% higher the day after some largely in-line results where both bulls and bears heard some of what they had expected to hear going into the report.
    • FBR & Co. reiterated its Market Perform rating and $38 price target, and  Jefferies Group reiterated its Buy while lowering its target to $34.61.
    • Hilliard Lyons' David Burke has a Buy rating and $38 target, but found the revenue a "disappointment." Still, the rationale for the Buy is still solid, at least for conservative income investors: "The company is now generating ongoing modest earnings growth. Last year’s earnings were $2.71 per share versus $2.56 per share in 2014. We are maintaining our 2016 estimate of $2.85 per share."
    • Meanwhile, Craig Moffett says the company will benefit all year from “lapping numbers that aren’t quite pro form, that don’t quite line up with new segment reporting, that still benefit from accounting distortions in wireless, and that have the benefit of an almost blank check of one-time revisions and adjustments.”
    • Adding back DirecTV, he says, along with adjusting for the Connecticut divestiture and leaving aside Mexico results, revenue actually fell 4.1% last quarter rather than the reported 22.1% increase. As video continues to shrink as a business, he argues, that leaves wireless, and wireless results "are not particularly compelling."
    • Previously: AT&T call: Bringing debt back to comfort levels; exploring sponsored content (Jan. 26 2016)
    • Previously: DirecTV purchase boosts AT&T revenues; Business Solutions margins grow (Jan. 26 2016)
    • Previously: AT&T -0.8% after in-line EPS, miss on revenue (Jan. 26 2016)
    | Wed, Jan. 27, 7:19 PM | 16 Comments
Company Description
AT&T, Inc. provides telecommunication services and products, including wireless communications, local exchange services, long-distance services, data/broadband and Internet services, video services, telecommunications equipment, managed networking and wholesale services. It operates business... More
Sector: Technology
Industry: Telecom Services - Domestic
Country: United States