Media Favorites: Scripps and Viacom

05/29/2015 7:00 am EST

Focus: STOCKS

Charles Carlson

Editor, DRIP Investor

While trying to call the exact bottom in a stock is a fool’s errand, I do believe that the recent declines in two media stocks are creating attractive entry points for long-term investors, suggests Chuck Carlson, editor of DRIP Investor.

Scripps Networks (SNI)

Scripps Networks has an attractive stable of properties, including the Food Network, HGTV, Travel Channel, DIY Network, and Cooking Channel.

The stock’s weakness stems from a lot of the concerns affecting most cable network stocks; individuals cutting the cord and moving away from viewing television in conventional ways.

The good news is that in a world of streaming TV programming, Scripps Networks still has a place. Its HGTV and DIY Network brands have carved out a strong position in the housing-related programming market.

Admittedly, the stock’s price action in recent months has been a bit ugly and you could see these shares fall into the low $60s during a more significant market correction.

But the quality of the firm’s content—not to mention its takeover appeal—makes the current price too attractive to ignore.

Viacom (VIAB)

Meanwhile, Viacom is best known for MTV, VH1, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, CMT, Spike TV, TV Land, and BET. The firm also has a sizable filmed entertainment business under its Paramount Pictures unit.

The biggest negative right now for Viacom is a fear that more pay-TV providers will drop some or all of Viacom’s offerings as a result of slumping viewership.

Viacom still has perhaps the largest audience among content providers in the younger, most attractive demographic for advertisers. But that demographic is also the most likely to cut the cord with cable companies.

Despite these issues, I see plenty of value and think a rebound is in the cards this time as well and recommend purchases at current prices.

Both Scripps Networks and Viacom offer direct-purchase plans whereby any investor may buy the first share and every share directly.

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