Verizon Eyes Charter Communications

Charter Communications stock was sharply higher on Thursday, due to a reported move by Verizon to explore some “combination” with the big cable operator.

Charter stock was up 10% after a report in The Wall Street Journal. Mid-day trading had Charter’s stock 6.3% higher to $329.96 and Verizon down 1.5% to $49.05.

Verizon is pursuing more companies to build its media and content businesses. Charter is the third-largest pay TV provider behind DirecTV and Comcast. It has now approximately 17 million video subscribers and 19 million broadband subscribers.

A deal would allow Verizon to keep pace with AT&T when it comes to building its traditional linear pay TV business. AT&T completed purchase its $48.5 billion deal DirecTV in mid-2015.

In addition, AT&T has agreed to acquire Time Warner Inc. for $85.4 billion.

Verizon has agreed to buy Yahoo, a digital media content business, for $4.8 billion. Recent major email hacks of Yahoo accounts have complicated that agreement, with the possibly of Verizon looking to scale back or abandon the deal.

In May of last year, Charter completed its $67 billion deal for Time Warner Cable.



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