EmptyBig day for sat duo
Shares of Sirius Satellite Radio and XM Satellite Radio jumped Wednesday after Cowen & Co. analyst Thomas Watts said it looks likely that their planned combination will gain Justice Department approval. Justice and the FCC must approve the planned merger, which faces scrutiny because the two are the only satellite radio broadcasters in the U.S. RBC Capital Markets Corp. analyst David Bank said recently that he expected the Justice Department to make its antitrust ruling within 30-60 days. XM's 4.3% gain to $14.21 on Wednesday led The Hollywood Reporter's Showbiz 50, and Sirius followed with its 3.3% increase to $3.42.
Lehman Bros. restarted coverage of Time Warner at "overweight," saying Wednesday that it thinks the prospects of a restructuring into a simpler content and advertising company could increase over the next 18-24 months with Jeff Bewkes as the CEO heir apparent. Lehman Bros. said that among potential moves is a complete separation of Time Warner Cable, a spinoff of publishing assets and a public offering of Internet asset AOL. TW closed 1.4% higher Wednesday at $18.56.
A proposal to tax gaming and betting in Mexico at a rate of 20% was approved Wednesday by a congressional committee. The measure still has to be voted on in the lower house of Congress. The move, part of a major tax overhaul proposed by President Felipe Calderon, is likely to hit broadcaster Grupo Televisa, entertainment company CIE and privately held firm Caliente, which have gaming and betting businesses.