Cable Stocks Mixed in Wake of Net-Neutrality Vote

Cable stocks were mixed in the wake of the Federal Communications Commission’s long anticipated decision to unravel net-neutrality rules, with Comcast and overbuilder Wide Open West up the strongest in early trading after the vote was announced, while other cable stocks yawned.

WOW shares rose the highest – they were up as much as 7% (61 cents) to $9.37 per share in early trading, while Comcast shares rose nearly 3% ($1.10 per share) to $39.68 each in the afternoon, shortly after the FCC announced its vote. But other cable operators and ISPs saw less dramatic stock price fluctuations.

Charter Communications was up about 0.3% ($1 per share) to $330 in afternoon trading, while Altice USA dipped slightly (0.1%, or 2 cents each) to $19.33 each and Cable One fell 1.3% ($9.19 each) to $684.31 per share.

Telcos AT&T and Verizon were relatively stable, down 0.4% and 0.6%, respectively.

Net neutrality’s biggest proponents – Google, Amazon and Facebook – didn’t see much damage from the decision in their stock prices. By the afternoon, all three were up by less than 1%.

Programming stocks were mixed as well. 21st Century Fox and The Walt Disney Co. were up the most – 5.4% and 3%, respectively, but that was for reasons other than net neutrality. For the rest of the sector, growth ranged from 2.7% for Discovery Communications and 0.4% for Time Warner Inc.