It's ugly in advertising - Barron's

Apr. 04, 2020 10:25 AM ETAMC Networks Inc. (AMCX), PARA, WBD, META, TWTR, GOOGL, NYT, NWSA, GTN, GCI, IHRT, CMLS, CCO, OUT, CMSA, T, DISDIS, NYT, CMLS, T, GCI, TWTR, GTN, CCO, WBD, NWSA, OUT, AMCX, META, GOOGL, CMSA, IHRT, PARABy: Clark Schultz, SA News Editor235 Comments
  • Advertising is drying up everywhere you look due to the pandemic, warns Barron's in a brutal assessment of the industry.
  • Basic cable: AMC Networks (NASDAQ:AMCX), ViacomCBS (NASDAQ:VIAC) and Discovery (NASDAQ:DISCA) are looking less attractive as cord-cutting accelerates during the pandemic.
  • Digital beasts: Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) have issued warnings that they will take a hit from the downturn, while Alphabet's Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) seems likely to also feel a pinch. Higher traffic isn't enough to offset lower ad spending amid a downturn in the economy.
  • Newspapers: Shares of New York Times (NYSE:NYT), News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA), Meredith (NYSE:MDP) and Gannett (NYSE:GCI) have already sold off as the industry continues to cut to the bone. Finding upside potential will be hard until consumer discretionary spending is on the mend.
  • TV and radio: iHeart Media (NASDAQ:IHRT) is hurting from the lack of commuters, while Cumulus Media (NASDAQ:CMLS) lost its valuable sports programming for the near term.
  • Billboards: Low traffic = low billboard views. Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings (NYSE:CCO) is off 77% and Outfront Media (NYSE:OUT) is down 65% after going into crisis mode.
  • Media giants: Diversified power players Comcast (NYSE:CMSA), AT&T (NYSE:T) and Disney (NYSE:DIS) have held up decently in the media sell-off, although they are all missing out on the sports revenue generated from major events.

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