Why Wall Street Is Concerned About the NFL

Sep 20, 2017  •  Post A Comment

Investors are concerned about the NFL, one of television’s most lucrative enterprises, and the reason is a familiar one for television: Ratings are down.

“NFL’s ratings woes continued in Week 2, and Wall Street is taking notice, given there are fewer excuses for falling viewership than there were a year ago when Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were distracting TV-watching Americans,” The Hollywood Reporter notes. “While NFL games remain some of the most-watched content on television, ratings slid 12 percent in the NFL’s opening weekend, with many blaming Hurricane Irma. But without dramatic weather, the second weekend was off 15 percent year-over-year. This comes after an 8 percent ratings slump last season.”

The stakes are high. The report notes that CBS, ESPN, Fox and NBC will generate about $2.5 billion in NFL advertising revenue this season, with an analyst estimating that even a 10 percent dip could translate to $200 million in lost earnings.

“Since the NFL season opened Sept. 7, shares of NBC parent Comcast are off 9 percent, ESPN parent Disney has seen its stock drop 3 percent and shares of CBS are down 5 percent,” THR notes. “Only shares of 21st Century Fox have risen in that time frame, up 2 percent.”

We encourage readers to click on the link above to THR to read the full analysis.


  1. Did THR check television ratings for other programming. They might have found that not as many are watching other programming as well because they are distracted by the nuclear war threat brought on by I can grab their p . . . . . s because I can man.

  2. Perhaps rating are down more than normal because the millions of people that live between Houston and Corpus Christi, and a good chunk of Florida have no electricity, and perhaps no TVs at the moment?

  3. Nope. Too much politics and disrespect for American traditiions. You can thank various players (who would most likely either be in prison or flipping hamburgers if they were not as fortunate as they are) and broadcasters who feel the need to voice their opinions instead of sticking to calling the game.

    50 percent of a potential market feels alienated….

  4. Bruce, Trump wasn’t President last year. Your logic is flawed. Jim LaForte’s analysis is much better thought out and reasoned. Pay attention to him and you might learn a thing or two. 🙂

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