Another one bites the dust


Citi is the latest Wall Street firm to decide it can do without an analyst covering radio companies, so Tony Wible has left the building. He had been best known of late for being Wall Street’s top cheerleader for Sirius XM.

Citi eliminated 11 analysts in all as part of the effort by Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit to cut costs.

Wible’s coverage list had included Citadel, Cox Radio, Entercom, Entravision and Sirius XM, along with some other media industry stocks such as TiVo and Netflix. His departure was widely lamented on investor message boards for Sirus XM. Wible had recently called the stock “massively undervalued” after Sirius XM fell below a buck a share.

By the way, Wible’s final calls were sell for Citadel, Cox and Entercom, hold for Entravision and buy for Sirius XM.

RBR/TVBR observation: There are awards given for top-performing analysts, based on their stock calls – and Wible was an award winner. But that didn’t save his job when Citi decided it no longer cared about his sector expertise. Unfortunately, pure play radio companies have become overwhelmingly penny stocks. The same is true of pure play TV stocks. Don’t look for any new analysts to pick up coverage of penny stocks. Until many broadcast stocks move back above the $5 threshold that defines penny stock hell, Wall Street will not be interested.