MSG Networks Inc. shares
slid about 13% Wednesday, after the operator of regional sports and entertainment networks posted weaker-than-expected fiscal fourth-quarter earnings. The company, which was spun out of Madison Square Gardens
in 2015, said it had net income of $41.2 million, or 54 cents a share, in the quarter to June 30, down from $45.2 million, or 60 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue fell 3% to $168.4 million. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of 63 cents and revenue of $171 million. Advertising revenue rose by $0.9 million, due to higher sales from the telecast of live professional sports programming, including playoff games, as well as higher sales from branded content. That was partially offset by a lower decline in deferred revenue related to ratings guarantees. Direct operating costs rose 2% to $70.1 million, mostly due to higher rights fees. Selling, general and administrative costs rose 33% to $26.3 million, mostly due to one-time costs, and higher advertising and marketing costs. Shares have fallen 38% in 2019, while the S&P 500
has gained 17%.
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