Traditional media shares downgraded by investment bank

Investment bank Lehman Brothers has downgraded its share rating on ‘traditional’TV and newspaper companies, although it posted a postive rating on the industry as a whole.

The bank today downgraded its stance from “hold’to ‘sell’on ITV, a move it said was due to the ‘disruption from coming technology changes’traditional media companies are facing.

Shares in the American-owned Financial Times publisher Pearson have also been downgraded to “sell”. Lehman Brothers has kept its “sell” rating on regional newspaper publishers Johnston Press and Trinity Mirror.

Despite this, Lehman’s overall rating on the media sector has been upgraded from ‘neutral’to ‘positive”.

Daily Mail and General Trust, owners of the Daily Mail and regional publisher Northcliffe Media, stays on a “hold’rating from Lehman due to its ‘diversified portfolio’of print and online companies both here and in Europe.

The bank said it preferred stocks in professional publishers and agencies, companies it said were ‘more likely to benefit from technology changes than traditional media stocks such as TV companies and newspapers.”

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