Monday media market wrap: Media shares hammered in first week of year shedding $1.5bn, after a strong finish to 2015

Media shares on the ASX were pummelled last week with the overall market capitalisation of the top 17 listed media companies falling $1.54bn, as investors sold off shares across the board. 

The total media market capitalisation of those 17 shares fell from $25.5bn at close on Monday to just over $24bn by late Friday, a 6.04 per cent decline.

A media index of the 17 biggest ASX listed media companies showed the combined share price fell from $125.23 on Monday to $117.83 at close on Friday.

Among the hardest hit were outdoor player Ooh Media, declining 9.43 per cent, marketing services firm Salmat which fell 9.09 per cent, Australian agency holding company Enero slipped 8.24 per cent and jobs classified business Seek, which lost 7.39 per cent. 

The best performing media share was Carsales, although that still declined 3.75 per cent from $11.74 to $11.30 over the week.

The decline comes after media shares rallied in the last few month of 2015.

An analysis of the media market on the Australian Stock Exchange shows the combined share price of the top 17 media shares had an overall share price of $100.03 at the start of July, which rose to $125.51 by the end of December.

Among the key drivers of that growth was the outdoor industry with both APN Outdoor and Ooh Media’s share prices surging from November to year end.

APN Outdoor started November at $4.93 but finished the year at $6.10 a rise of 23 per cent in two months, Ooh! started at $3.53 but finished December at $4.72 a rise of 33 per cent amid strong advertising revenues.

Nine was also a strong performer at the end of 2015. In the final two months of the year its share price rallied from $1.51 to $1.90, a rise of 25 per cent in the wake of confirmation that it was in talks with both regional players Southern Cross Austereo and WIN Corp about a potential merger should the government move to reform media laws.

Southern Cross Austereo also saw its share price spike moving from $1.02 at the start of November to $1.14 as of December 31, up 10.5 per cent.

APN News & Media was the worst share price performer of the first half of 2015/16 financial year. Its share price started at $0.70 in July but finished the year at $0.52 cents – a decline of 25.7 per cent.

Nic Christensen


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