AT&T Inc.

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  • Oct. 7, 2015, 11:29 AM
    • After calling out the FCC in public, AT&T (T +0.9%) has received what had been a stalled waiver that now allows it to begin offering Wi-Fi calling on its iPhones.
    • The company had applied for a waiver in June from rules regarding support for hearing- and speech-impaired users under TTY, but a comment cycle passed without it being granted.
    • The company's grateful, says its Jim Cicconi, but: "At the same time we are left scratching our heads as to why the FCC still seems intent on excusing the behavior of T-Mobile and Sprint, who have been offering these services without a waiver for quite some time."
    • The FCC seems to be skipping enforcement action and inviting T-Mobile and Sprint to apply for similar waivers, Cicconi said.
    | Oct. 7, 2015, 11:29 AM | 9 Comments
  • Oct. 7, 2015, 9:59 AM
    | Oct. 7, 2015, 9:59 AM
  • Oct. 5, 2015, 9:25 AM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) and Viacom (VIA, VIAB) have signed a new long-term deal for retransmission of Viacom programming on the U-verse and DirecTV platforms.
    • AT&T took the extra step of highlighting its own rate accomplishment: "In recognition of AT&T's status as the largest pay TV provider in the world, this agreement entitles AT&T's satellite and IPTV platforms to the best deal in the industry for Viacom's leading portfolio of television brands."
    • Premarket, AT&T is up 0.8%; VIAB is flat.
    • Previously: Media General, DirecTV ink last-minute carriage deal (Oct. 01 2015)
    • Previously: Tegna, Dish extend carriage talk deadline by eight days (Oct. 01 2015)
    | Oct. 5, 2015, 9:25 AM
  • Oct. 2, 2015, 2:59 PM
    • AT&T (T -0.4%) has a letter in to the FCC noting that while it awaits a waiver from the FCC to offer Wi-Fi calling services -- a more notable service deficiency with the advent of Apple's iOS9 -- Sprint (S +4%) and T-Mobile (TMUS +0.1%), along with Google's Project Fi, are offering such services without such a waiver.
    • AT&T had planned to offer Wi-Fi calling in September, but filed a waiver related to TTY support regulations (as such assistance for the hearing- and speech-impaired can be tricky to provide over some Wi-Fi). The agency hasn't provided such a waiver yet, "even while our competitors provide those services in defiance of the commission's rules," AT&T writes.
    • The carrier is pressing for a granted waiver "without further delay."
    | Oct. 2, 2015, 2:59 PM | 25 Comments
  • Oct. 1, 2015, 4:58 PM
    | Oct. 1, 2015, 4:58 PM
  • Sep. 30, 2015, 5:15 PM
    • Sprint (S +2.7%) is going to kick up the cost of its unlimited data plan, formerly $60/month, to $70/month, showing that unlimited data plans may be testing sustainability at the wireless carriers.
    • That's still the best U.S. postpaid deal for that plan, and current customers will be grandfathered in at the $60/month rate. The price changes for new customers Oct. 16.
    • T-Mobile (TMUS +0.6%) sells an unlimited data plan for $80/month, and AT&T (T +1.5%) and Verizon (VZ -0.1%) don't offer one.
    • Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure has alluded to the strain of unlimited data, as well as wishes to bump customers toward the tiered data plans.
    • Earlier, Sprint pursued limiting video download speeds, but has removed such restrictions as customers pushed back.
    | Sep. 30, 2015, 5:15 PM | 36 Comments
  • Sep. 29, 2015, 5:02 PM
    • As prep for its analyst conference tomorrow, AT&T (NYSE:T) has filed an 8-K updating Q3 guidance -- expecting capital spending to increase sequentially, and for free cash flow to exceed $4.5B.
    • It's reaffirming all other full-year guidance, including double-digit revenue growth and "continued consolidated margin expansion" even with foreign-exchange pressures.
    • AT&T expects more than 2M net adds in wireless, with gains across postpaid, prepaid, connected devices and reseller, and positive branded voice net adds.
    • DirecTV integration is going well early, and it expects positive net adds in that operation and positive IP broadband net adds, though U-verse subs are expected to decline as it focuses elsewhere.
    • AT&T will announce Q3 results on Oct. 22.
    | Sep. 29, 2015, 5:02 PM | 14 Comments
  • Sep. 29, 2015, 1:51 PM
    • With a plummeting currency bedeviling Venezuela, AT&T (T +0.2%) is considering a $1.1B charge tied to DirecTV's assets in the country.
    • The assets are valued at $1.1B based on an exchange rate of 12 bolivars/dollar. If AT&T values the assets at the devalued "Simadi" exchange rate -- 200 bolivars/dollar -- it would effectively wipe out most of the dollar value, creating a "negative impact on reported revenues, operating income and the fair value of our investment in the Venezuelan subsidiary."
    • AT&T has maintained that the primary value of its DirecTV deal is in the U.S. business. In Q1, the Venezuela operation generated $200M in revenue and OIBDA of $75M, but the Simadi rate would have meant an operating loss.
    | Sep. 29, 2015, 1:51 PM | 12 Comments
  • Sep. 25, 2015, 2:01 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) declares $0.47/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
    • Forward yield 5.76%
    • Payable Nov. 2; for shareholders of record Oct. 9; ex-div Oct. 7.
    | Sep. 25, 2015, 2:01 PM | 21 Comments
  • Sep. 24, 2015, 6:05 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) is getting close to a couple of programming blackouts, with no carriage deals on a couple of deadlines looming at the end of the month.
    • Tribune Media (NYSE:TRCO) and its flagship WGN may go dark on U-verse Oct. 1, the company is warning viewers.
    • Meanwhile, Media General (NYSE:MEG), which operates 71 stations in 48 local markets, is in a dispute with AT&T's DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) that could black out stations Oct. 1. Interestingly, in pointing viewers away from DirecTV, Media General recommends U-verse as one alternative.
    • As always, negotiations are under wraps, but DirecTV homes in on a requested increase, saying that "Media General is threatening to block your station’s signal unless they receive more than double the current fees."
    • After hours: T -0.2%; TRCO -0.8%.
    | Sep. 24, 2015, 6:05 PM | 6 Comments
  • Sep. 22, 2015, 7:24 PM
    • With most observers thinking any theoretical merger between T-Mobile (TMUS -1.1%) and Sprint (S +0.3%) would have to wait until a new U.S. administration (and John Legere saying "Oh yeah ... the only possible coming together of Sprint and T-Mobile is if we pick them up off the sidewalk"), analysts at Evercore say the two could combine network assets.
    • It would be a sort of a merger, into a new company (a REIT in particular) that would hold their network resources. Bigger investments at lower cost would come, along with a speedier network once spectrum assets were blended.
    • Given up, of course, would be the chance to differentiate, and snipe the rival over network power.
    • Combined, the two control 255 MHz of spectrum, more than the 147 MHz at AT&T (T -0.9%) or the 116 MHz of Verizon (VZ -0.9%). A new "NetCo" would rent the network back to the two, as well as possibly others, and support MVNO customers.
    • As a final entry in the "pro" column, the analysts note a combined network would make any future merger more headache-free.
    | Sep. 22, 2015, 7:24 PM | 21 Comments
  • Sep. 22, 2015, 12:46 PM
    • Traffic checks of U.S. wireless carriers by Pacific Crest's Michael Bowen show slowness for the leaders and some momentum for challengers.
    • Verizon (VZ -1%) was "slow" and AT&T (T -0.9%) "somewhat weak" in the past month heading into a key iPhone announcement. Verizon saw a lower amount of pre-orders for the iPhone and was coming off a data plan re-sizing; AT&T is lower-key about pushing phone upgrades, though tablet promotions are going well and customers are responding to DirecTV bundles.
    • Meanwhile, promotions are bearing fruit at T-Mobile (TMUS -1.9%) and Sprint (S -1%). T-Mobile traffic was "strong," Bowen says, with employees optimistic about iPhone pre-orders and new financing plans. Meanwhile, most Sprint stores met or beat August goals and expect the same for September, as the "iPhone forever" leasing plan is showing strong demand.
    | Sep. 22, 2015, 12:46 PM | 31 Comments
  • Sep. 21, 2015, 3:36 PM
    • Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBGI +0.6%), the nation's biggest local broadcaster, has held talks to acquire the Tennis Channel, The Wall Street Journal reports.
    • Sinclair has engaged in multiple rounds of talks with the various private-equity owners of the network, which include Apollo Global Management and Bain Capital Ventures. DirecTV (NYSE:T) and Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) also have small stakes.
    • The ownership is seeking a healthy premium, asking $500M or more for the Tennis Channel.
    • It would be a bid for more content by Sinclair, which is dependent on the big four broadcasters for much of what it puts on TV.
    | Sep. 21, 2015, 3:36 PM | 2 Comments
  • Sep. 20, 2015, 11:03 AM
    • HP (NYSE:HPQ) recently announced that it would cut around 30K jobs, but despite its size, the corporate layoffs are not the largest of the recent past.
    • According to outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, the following list can claim that distinction.
    • IBM (NYSE:IBM) layoffs: 60K - July 1993
    • Citigroup (NYSE:C) layoffs: 50K - November 2008
    • Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) layoffs: 50K - January 1993
    • General Motors (NYSE:GM) layoffs: 47K - February 2009
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) layoffs: 40K - January 1996
    • Ford (NYSE:F) layoffs: 35K - January 2002
    • Kmart (SHLD) layoffs: 35K - January 2003
    • Circuit City layoffs: 34K - January 2009
    • Boeing (NYSE:BA) layoffs: 31K -September 2001
    • Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) layoffs: 30K - September 2011
    | Sep. 20, 2015, 11:03 AM | 66 Comments
  • Sep. 16, 2015, 4:06 PM
    • In a key move for its future, AT&T (NYSE:T) has named Enrique Rodriguez -- recently of Sirius XM -- as its chief technical officer for the Entertainment and Internet business.
    • Rodriguez has oversight of both U-verse and DirecTV, and any combination of or successor to those services. Former DirecTV CTO Romulo Pontual left the company after the merger was completed.
    • Rodriguez was most recently an executive VP for productions, operations and connected vehicles at Sirius XM, and has executive experience at both Cisco and Microsoft.
    • Ericsson is working with AT&T on bringing the U-verse and DirecTV services, but there are few details yet about how it will go about it.
    • Previously: AT&T: We're well positioned to handle TV-industry challenges (Sep. 16 2015)
    | Sep. 16, 2015, 4:06 PM | 3 Comments
  • Sep. 16, 2015, 3:33 PM
    • More squabbles among wireless carriers as T-Mobile (NYSE:TMUS), along with the rural service-focused Competitive Carriers Association, are pressing to prevent AT&T's (NYSE:T) purchase of valuable lower 700 MHz spectrum.
    • The deal concerns a purchase of license from Club 42 CM L.P. As often, it's an it said/it said situation. T-Mobile says AT&T hasn't demonstrated the deal is in the public interest and just wants to hoard low-frequency spectrum, while AT&T says T-Mobile has no good reason to oppose the deal other than to stop it from gathering the spectrum.
    • AT&T says the spectrum isn't being used and the FCC has agreed with the logic behind the purchase. CCA and T-Mobile have opposed the deal, writes AT&T's Joan Marsh, "arguing that the Commission should simply prohibit any incremental low-band spectrum aggregation by AT&T and Verizon. Period. They essentially assert that low band spectrum transactions should be deemed presumptively unlawful for any company named AT&T or Verizon."
    • "AT&T simply wants to grab more low-band spectrum to depress competition, reduce investment and stifle innovation," T-Mobile's Kathleen Ham told FierceWireless.
    • The FCC has said that transactions resulting in a carrier controlling one-third of spectrum below 1 GHz in any given market would be subject to enhanced review.
    | Sep. 16, 2015, 3:33 PM | 16 Comments
Company Description
AT&T Inc, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, provides wireless and wireline telecommunications services in the United States and internationally. The Company has three reportable segments: Wireless, Wireline, and Other.