Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Shout out from S&P

S&P put Time Warner (BBB+) on negative watch. Analyst Heather Goodchild cited "business and execution risks associated with the company's planned shift in strategies at AOL." For whatever reason, Heather failed to mention this blog's commentary from earlier today on the media industry. Admittedly, the phrase "business and execution risk" wasn't specifically used, but then again, only business consultants use phrases like that anyway.

I'm hearing a lot of people call S&P's move surprising, given that TWX was just removed from negative watch in March. But according to Tim Annett of the Wall Street Journal, AOL subscription fees accounted for 1/5 of Time Warner's revenue. Losing that much revenue almost has to create near-term risks that weren't evident in March.

TWX '12's are 3bp wider on the day to +114.