The FCC completed round 18 of the forward portion of the spectrum auction Thursday (Aug. 25) with a bid total of $18,578,544,000. Netting out the discounts and bidding credits, that comes to $17.890 billion.
That is compared with the $17,932,219,000, net $17.700 billion in round 17.
The key figure is the net figure of $17.890 billion. That is the figure that will have to be at least $88,379,558,704 to cover broadcasters payments and moving expenses and auction expenses if the auction is to close after stage 1, in which 126 MHz is being auctioned in 416 geographic license parcels to 62 qualified bidders.
The auction began Aug. 16 with one, six-hour round, moved the next day to two, two-hour rounds per day. It moved to three, one-hour rounds per day Aug. 23. the FCC has been raising the price 5% per round on the blocks of spectrum in 416 geographic areas (PEAs, or partical economic areas) up for auction.
Starting Monday, Aug. 29, it will be raising the prices by 10% per round.
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.