AT&T’s rising stock price
On November 28, 2016, AT&T (T) stock closed at $39.54. AT&T stock has risen 8.3% in the past month and 14.9% year-to-date.
Factors causing rise in AT&T’s stock price
AT&T launched its DIRECTV Now streaming service on November 28, 2016. This service could be a strong competitor for other OTT (over-the-top) services from pay-TV providers like Dish Network’s (DISH) Sling TV.
Another factor that could be driving up the company’s stock is AT&T’s proposed acquisition of Time Warner (TWX). The acquisition, if approved by the FCC, could be disruptive for the media industry. The combined company would be in the business of both the creation and the distribution of content. But so far, the acquisition announcement has been met with concerns from both politicians and media industry competitors such as Disney.
AT&T announced its 3Q16 results on October 22, 2016. In 3Q16, its earnings met consensus expectations and had stayed flat since 3Q15. This could be one of the reasons for the rise in AT&T stock.
The company posted adjusted EPS (earnings per share) of $0.74, the same as in 3Q15 and in line with the consensus estimate. EPS estimates for 3Q16 ranged from a high of $0.77 to a low of $0.71.
In this series, we’ll look at AT&T’s move to exempt its streaming services from data caps and assess whether this violates net neutrality. We’ll also look at AT&T’s decision to exempt DIRECTV Now from data caps and whether the company will do the same for HBO Now if its proposed acquisition of Time Warner is approved.