|[January 07, 2013]
Fitch Releases 3Q'12 U.S. Telecommunications & Cable Stats Quarterly Report
CHICAGO --(Business Wire)--
According to a new report issued today by Fitch Ratings, the U.S.
Telecom and Cable sector's liquidity and margins have remained stable
throughout 2012 in the face of competitive pressures with minimal
organic growth opportunities.
Third-quarter liquidity remained strong, with 94% of committed
facilities available for borrowing and total liquidity exceeding
aggregate 2012, 2013, and 2014 maturities. Refinancing activities have
extended the maturity profile within the sector, as scheduled maturities
during 2013 and 2014 declined by over $4 billion since second-quarter
2012. LTM free cash flow (FCF) improved in the third quarter to $36
billion, and issuers maintained balance sheet cash and short-term
investment balances of approximately $51 billion, over $10 billion more
than last quarter mainly through debt issuance. Comcast (News - Alert) Corp. generated
almost $7 billion more of cash in excess of second-quarter balances due
to proceeds received from SpectrumCo.'s sale of AWS spectrum to Verizon (News - Alert)
Wireless and cash proceeds received from the redemption of
NBCUniversal's economic stake in A&E Television Networks LLC.
Margins have remained stable throughout 2012 in the face of persistent
competitive pressures and with minimal organic growth opportunities.
Aggregate LTM EBITDA margins declined 117 basis points (bps) year over
year to 32%. DISH Network Corp.'s LTM EBITDA margins witnessed the
largest declines in the portfolio with a 100 bps decline quarter over
quarter and a 420 bps decline year overyear, primarily resulting from
higher subscriber-related expenses. Credit profiles are steady, as
leverage is slightly lower from the previous year at 2.35x from 2.42x.
Capital intensity typically ranges between 13.5%-14% for the
telecommunications industry. Fitch expects capital intensity to retreat
in 2013 to the lower end of this range, which includes a continuation of
higher wireless spending due to the deployment of 4G LTE (News - Alert) technology.
Aside from the industry, AT&T announced it would boost capital spending
until 2015 to significantly expand both wireless and wireline broadband
The full report 'Telecommunications & Cable Stats Quarterly --
Third-Quarter 2012' is available on www.fitchratings.com.
Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.
Applicable Criteria and Related Research: U.S. Telecom and Cable Stats
Quarterly -- Third-Quarter 2012
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