Continuing concerns over lower U.S. oil prices -- and sharply lower stock market and currency concerns in China -- forced U.S. equity markets dramatically lower on Thursday. Media stocks were not immune.
Mid-day trading witnessed Facebook sink 5% to $98.03 in mid-day Thursday trading. Netflix was off 4% to $113.13, while Discovery Communications dropped 3.9% lower to $25.32. Viacom was 3.1% off to $38.85, 21st Century Fox lost 2.9% to $25.98, Yahoo dropped 6% lower to $30.30 and Google lost 2.6% to $740.12.
Comcast Corp. fared a bit better, slipping 1% to $54.66 -- as did CBS, down 1.6% to $45.36. Walt Disney also had small losses - -- down 0.9% to $99.48. Sinclair Broadcast Group lost 0.6% to $30.87.
TV station groups were also generally down, with Tenga losing 2.6% to $23.94; Tribune Media gave back 3.3% to $32.14, and Nexstar Broadcasting was sharply lower -- 7.6% to $52.89.
Nexstar on Thursday announced it had come to an agreement to buy Media General TV stations. Media General’s stock was up 1.7% to $16.04 in mid-day trading. Back in September, Nexstar made an offer to buy Media General in a deal valued at $4.1 billion.
A few media stocks were on the upside, including Time Warner -- adding 2.7% to $70.54 -- and Scripps Interactive Networks, adding 0.3% to $52.07.
By way of comparison, the broader markets, such as the Dow Jones Industrial Index, were off 2.0% to 16,577.