AT&T Stock Climbs Higher After Warner Brothers Discovery Spinoff

Analysts have been quick to chime in

Deputy Editor
Apr 11, 2022 at 11:22 AM
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AT&T Inc (NYSE:T) stock is up 6.8% to trade at $19.49 this morning, following news that its completed the spinoff of its WarnerMedia unit to Discovery Communications late on Friday. The result of the $43 billion merger is Warner Brothers Discovery, which made its debut today, and is trading under the ticker symbol WBD.

Warner Brothers Discovery has already made it onto Deutsche Bank's "top pick" list, while AT&T receives analyst attention as well. Bank of America Global Research and Deutsche Bank both slashed their price targets to $25 and $24, respectively. J.P. Morgan Securities, meanwhile, resumed coverage with an "overweight" rating and $22 price target. The firm said the spinoff will allow AT&T to put more focus on its core wireline business as a "communications-focused" company. 

This gap higher has T jumping above its year-to-date breakeven level, as well as recent pressure at its 100-day moving average. While the security spent the majority of March and the beginning of April consolidating below the $18.30 level, it just came off its fourth-straight weekly win. Year-to-date, T is still down 14.2%. 

Analysts are bearish on T, with 20 of the 31 in coverage carrying a "hold" or worse rating, ahead of its April 13 ex-div date. Earnings are coming up soon as well, with AT&T set to announce its first-quarter report before the open on Thursday, April 21. 

Despite calls outnumbering puts on an absolute basis, the stock's 50-day put/call volume ratio of 0.50 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) is in the elevated 93rd percentile of its annual range. This suggests a healthier appetite for for long puts of late.




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