Standard & Poors Equity Research Offers Eight Media Predictions for 2008

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Sector Continues To Be Re-Shaped By Corporate Actions, Digital Moves,

     Regulations

    NEW YORK, Jan. 14 // -- Building on its prescient 2007 predictions* and extensive coverage of the media and entertainment industry, Standard & Poor's Equity Research today published its forecast for the year ahead, including a list of prognostications that could dramatically reshape the landscape over the next twelve months. These ideas, developed by Tuna N. Amobi, Standard & Poor's Equity Research analyst for Media & Entertainment, highlight a range of expected scenarios within this rapidly-evolving sector. These findings can be found in the report titled "Back to the Future: Eight Media Predictions for 2008," published by Standard & Poor's, a leading provider of financial market intelligence.

    "The past year was a very bumpy ride for media investors, as the industry confronted various challenges induced by rapid-fire shifts in the competitive, economic and regulatory environments. This sets the stage for what could be the most dramatic repositioning yet of the media landscape in 2008," says Tuna N. Amobi, also Director of the Consumer Discretionary Cyclical Group for Standard & Poor's Equity Research. "It is already shaping up as what should be a very memorable year, in our view, likely providing further visibility on critical issues affecting digital music and home entertainment, cable and satellite broadcasting, and advertising, to name just a few."

    Among Standard & Poor's predictions for 2008 are major strategic moves by industry heavyweights Time Warner (TWX: Hold, $16) and News Corp (NWS: Buy, $20, NWS.A: Buy; $20) that could have far-reaching investment implications. In addition, the independent equity research firm believes the format wars in digital music and HD DVDs could see key strides made to respectively increase competition and foster consumer adoption. The report also concludes that the Hollywood writers' strike would create shifts in traditional business models, while setting an unflattering prognosis for the cable industry's initiatives on wireless convergence. Finally, hotly-contested races leading up to the upcoming elections will set a high water mark for political advertising across all media.

    "When the dust settles in 2008, we believe that the factors that will help decide the industry's winners and losers are structural nimbleness, responsiveness to consumer shifts, international growth, and a strong financial profile that endures a slowing global economy and the continued fallout of the credit crunch. Importantly, the winners will likely include those that have executed strategies that both reward shareholders and establish a strong base from which to make future moves," notes Amobi. "Our optimism reflects the view that the continued volatility in the media and entertainment landscape should create even more compelling investment opportunities."

    To view a video clip of Tuna Amobi discussing his "Eight Media Predictions for 2008", please click here: mms://a1802.v19724b.c19724.g.vm.akamaistream.net/7/1802/19724/v0001/streaml ogi cs.download.akamai.com/25711/S_and_P/sptv-survey-114.wmv (To view this Web site, please copy and paste the URL into your browser.)

    Members of the media can request a copy of this report from the communications contact listed at the end of this release.

    The analyst quoted above is a Standard & Poor's equity analyst. He has no affiliation with any company he covers, nor any ownership interest in any companies he covers.

    * Readers should note that past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.

    About Standard & Poor's Equity Research Services

    As the world's largest producer of independent equity research, Standard & Poor's licenses its research to over 1,000 institutions for their investors and advisors, including 19 of the top 20 securities firms, 13 of the top 20 banks, and 11 of the top 20 life insurance companies. Standard & Poor's team of 120 experienced U.S., European and Asian equity analysts use a fundamental, bottom-up approach to assess a global universe of approximately 2,000 equities across more than 120 industries worldwide. Follow Standard & Poor's equity analysts' U.S. market commentary each day at http://www.equityresearch.standardandpoors.com/.

    The equity research reports and recommendations provided by Standard & Poor's Equity Research Services are performed separately from any other analytic activity of Standard & Poor's. Standard & Poor's Equity Research Services has no access to non-public information received by other units of Standard & Poor's. Standard & Poor's does not trade for its own account. The analytical and ethical conduct of Standard & Poor's equity analysts is governed by the firm's Research Objectivity Policy, a copy of which may also be found at http://www.standardandpoors.com.

    About Standard & Poor's

    Standard & Poor's, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), is the world's foremost provider of financial market intelligence, including independent credit ratings, indices, risk evaluation, investment research and data. With approximately 8,500 employees, including wholly owned affiliates, located in 23 countries, Standard & Poor's is an essential part of the world's financial infrastructure and has played a leading role for more than 140 years in providing investors with the independent benchmarks they need to feel more confident about their investment and financial decisions. For more information, visit http://www.standardandpoors.com.
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