CBS Reports Improved 2Q

NEW YORK: Shares of CBS jumped on the broadcaster’s net earnings of $15.4 million on consolidated revenues of $3.01 billion for the quarter ending June 30. The company beat some analyst estimates with adjusted earnings per share of 8 cents (excluding two, one-time charges).

“As we anticipated, early signs of a recovery took hold in the second quarter, and our revenue, profit and EPS trends were all better than in the first quarter," said Leslie Moonves, President and Chief Executive Officer, CBS Corporation. "We continue to believe that the back half of the year will be considerably stronger than the first."

Operating income before depreciation and amortization for the second quarter was $387.4 million versus $760.4 million last year. Operating income was $242.2 million versus $637 million. Soft ad sales affected both.

Television revenues dipped 10 percent in the second quarter on lower ad sales and program licensing fees. TV revenues totaled $1.95 billion compared to $2.16 billion in 2Q08.
Ad sales totaled $1.15 billion, comprising 59 percent of revenues, dropped 13 percent compared to a year ago.
Television licensing fees totaled $348 million, down 6 percent.
Affiliate revenues were $328.8 million, up 10 percent.

TV OIBDA was down 40 percent to $306.7 million; operating income was down 44 percent to $264.4 million. The quarter included a $14 million write-down on programming inventory and $4.1 million in restructuring charges related to the digital transition.

A shares of CBS (NYSE: CBS.A) held at $11 in today’s trading, up from less than $9 before the company’s 2Q results were announced.
-- Deborah D. McAdams

July 28, 2009: “CBS Expected to Meet the Street”
Wachovia estimates that CBS 2Q revenues will be down 13 percent to $3.052 billion versus the Street consensus of $3.055. OIBDA is pegged at $369 million, down 53 percent, versus consensus of $391 million, and earnings per share of 6 cents versus consensus of 8 cents.

Previous TVB coverage of CBS:
July 1, 2009:“Deutshe Bank Cuts CBS Forecast”
The investment bank scaled back its outlook because of skepticism about a rally in the media segment. Some investors see signs of the advertising market on a rebound the Deutsche analyst said, but that would be challenging “given the sorry state of the consumer.”

June 22, 2009:“CBS CFO Steps Down”
Fred Reynolds relinquished his CFO duties July 20, though he'll continue as an executive vice president, working with CEO Leslie Moonves on the transition of his responsibilities until his official retirement Aug. 15. He'll be succeeded by Joseph Ianiello, who's been deputy CFO since November.

June 8, 2009:S&P Cuts CBS Credit Rating
Standard & Poor’s cut CBS's corporate credit rating from BBB to BBB- on Friday. The rating outlook is negative, and was downgraded in part on falling automotive revenues. A BBB- rating is S&P's lowest investment grade. CBS had debt of more than $7 billion at the end of March.

May 28, 2009:“CBS Increases Senior Note Offering”
CBS Corp. is reopening its senior note offering to raise another $250 million. The 8.875 percent notes come due in 2019. CBS previously issued $350 million in likewise notes on May 13, for a current total of $600 million. The two issuances, along with the $400 million of 8.2 percent senior notes due 2014 issued by the company May 13, bring CBS's total senior note offerings for the month to $1 billion.

May 8, 2009:“CBS TV Segment Revenues Down 12 Percent”
CBS’s results for the first quarter reflected the absence of political spending on TV as well as the soft market. The TV operations generated $2.23 billion in revenue, down 12 percent from the $2.54 billion posted a year ago. Operating income for the stations and the network was $184.7 million, compared to $404.8 million a year ago.