Cable Gets Clobbered

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The fallout from disappointing third quarter results at two top MSO continued to rock cable operator stocks Friday, despite a slight rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Index.
The Dow was up a slight 22 points on Friday, closing at 12,231.11. But cable shares, rocked by mixed results at Cablevision Systems, continued to slide.
Cablevision shares were hit the hardest, falling as much as 16% ($2.81 per share) to $14.50 each in early trading Friday before closing at $15.14, down 12.5% ($2.17 per share). Flat operating cash flow growth in the third quarter and fears that it may have reached its growth limit sent the shares southward. Time Warner Cable, which sent the sector down on Thursday after its reported sluggish third quarter performance, took another hit on Friday, falling 4.1% ($2.69 each) to $62.48 per share. Charter Communications fell 8% ($4.00) to 45.58; and Comcast was down 3% (74 cents) to $23.85 per share.
Unlike Thursday's slide, satellite and programming stocks also felt the pain - Viacom and Liberty Interactive were the only exceptions, up 0.5% and 1.2%, respectively. On the satellite side, Dish Network fell 3.9% ($1.00 each) to $24.44 and DirecTV was down 3.8% ($1.81) to $45.53.
Leading the programming decline was Liberty Starz down 3.4% ($2.43 per share) to $67.42 per share followed by AMC Networks, down 1.5% (51 cents per share) to $33.49; and Scripps Networks, down 1.1% (48 cents per share) to $43.65. Rounding out the sector was Time Warner Inc., down 1% (33 cents per share) to $35.47; Discovery Communications, down 0.6% (24 cents per share) to $42.83; Walt Disney, down 0.25% (9 cents per share) to $36.19; and News Corp., 0.11% 2 cents per share) to $18.07.