Cable Weathers Market Sell-Off

Cable stocks took a hit in an overall market sell-off Monday, but most managed to keep losses in check in the early hours of the session, even as the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 450 points in early trading.

The Dow was down 450.52 points to 16,974.51 at 11:01 a.m. Monday, the result of what appears to be an economic slowdown in China, according to the NASDAQ website. Weaker than expected manufacturing data and a falling currency triggered a 7% drop in mainland China stocks, leading authorities there to halt trading before the end of the session.

The moves forced many U.S. investors to the exits as optimism for a strong 2016 waned. While some tech stocks were hit hard – Netflix fell 7% and Google parent Alphabet dipped 3% -- cable stocks managed to keep their losses manageable, with declines in the 1% to 3% range.

Charter Communications was down 4%, or $7.42 each, to $175.68 per share in early trading, and QVC Group fell more than 3%, while The Walt Disney Co. was down 2.6% ($2.68 each) to $102.40 and Viacom was down 2.8% ($1.17 each) to $40 per share.

Other stocks showed more modest losses – Time Warner Inc. was down about 1%, Discovery Communications fell about 2%, and Comcast was down about 1.7%.