Wall Street Instability Continues Through Friday’s Lunch Hour


LOS ANGELES — It’s been a heck of a March thus far for media stocks on Wall Street. Violent dips and small recoveries have been seen for the last two weeks, and midday trading on Friday saw the overall market improve from Thursday’s dismal drubbing.

How did radio and TV companies fare as of lunch time?

It’s a mixed bag.

ViacomCBS shares were down again, losing 5 cents to $15.85.

For The Walt Disney Co., shares were up by nearly $3 a share, to $94.74, as investors understand that short-term theme park closures could bring more consumers to Disney+ and its array of cable TV channels.

Nexstar Media Group has seen the most instability, and as of 12:30pm Friday a 9.4% rebound from Thursday’s disastrous trading was in the works. Still, NXST was at $74.59 — a sharp dip from earlier this month.

Also seeing upward momentum after a sharp drop: iHeartMedia, which was up 28 cents to $8.57, and Cumulus Media, rising 75 cents to $5.71.

The current prices are considerably lower than where these companies were trading two weeks ago.

But, those companies were up. With Townsquare Media set to present its Q4 2019 earnings at 8am Eastern on Monday, shares as of 12:30pm ET Friday were off 27 cents to $4.10.

Then, there is Salem Media Group, which shared a lukewarm Q4 2019 report and not-so-great Q1 2020 visibility in a late Thursday earnings call from its Camarillo, Calif., headquarters.

As of 12:30pm, SALM was off by 18 cents — a 16.5% decline — to just 91 cents.

One would have to go back to April 2009 to see Salem shares at this level.

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