CBS Joins Others In Expressing Q1 Strength

Les-MoonvesCBS CEO Leslie Moonves echoed Thursday recent comments from Discovery and Time Warner indicating that advertisers are not exercising options to cancel spending commitments at any significant rate for the coming first quarter.

"Business as usual," Moonves said on an earnings call.

"Because they know they’ll have to pay more” if they opt out and come back in the scatter market, he said.

In the current fourth quarter, Moonves said the scatter market is drawing increases in the mid-teen percentage rate over the upfront.

On the issue of online distribution, Moonves did not suggest that CBS shows would be available on Hulu platforms, even after a deal with the CW. He said the CW deal includes no advertising inventory split -- "which is something we absolutely refused to do" -- but is strictly rights payments.



CBS reported a 1% revenue jump in the third quarter to $1.63 billion in its entertainment segment, which includes the CBS network. The network noted success with prime-time sales.

The local broadcasting segment, which includes TV and radio stations, posted a 3% drop in revenues to $656 million, but that can be largely attributed to a lack of political advertising at the TV stations versus a year ago. On the ad front, the stations drew more ad dollars from financial services and domestic auto marketers.

In the outdoor segment, the U.S. billboard business rose 3%.

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