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Media sector's capital markets activity falls to new low in October

Media companies in the U.S., Canada and Bermuda raised less than $1 billion from capital markets in October, marking the sector's lowest monthly total for the year to date.

The media sector raised about $445.3 million from debt offerings and $3 million from common equity offerings in October. That compared to aggregate raises of $6.53 billion across offering types in September.

Publishing company Gannett Co. Inc.'s unit Gannett Holdings LLC recorded the sector's largest capital offering in October with a $400 million senior secured note offering.

Most of the media sector's capital raising activity occurred earlier in the year. Three August debt offerings by Comcast Corp. ranked as the sector's largest individual raises for the year to date, bringing in $6 billion, $5 billion and $4 billion, respectively. Comcast also raised the most capital overall for the year to date, with $17.07 billion in aggregate, including exchanges of several series of notes.

A June debt offering by radio broadcasting services provider Sirius XM Radio Inc., which is a unit of Sirius XM Holdings Inc., took the fourth spot, raising $2.0 billion. The company said the net proceeds will be used to redeem outstanding debt.

With respect to equity offerings, media conglomerate ViacomCBS Inc. raised the most with a common stock offering of $1.7 billion as well as a $1 billion preferred stock offering.

Within the broader media sector, cable and satellite companies raised the most capital year to date, with $33.30 billion in aggregate, followed by broadcasting companies with $12.30 billion.

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