What Investors Should Know as Football Season Approaches

Football season is back, so what does that mean for stocks?

A new version of Madden (EA) came out for iOS. Rupert Murdoch unveiled his new, lavishly funded sports network to compete with ESPN (DIS) last week. And McDonalds (MCD) officially announced a roll-out of bone-in chicken wings; a promotion that will run through the fall. 

In other words, it's football season.

Football is by far the most popular sport in the US. In fact, if you count college sports and professional sports separately - football is the first and third most popular sport - beating out NASCAR and professional basketball. It's kind of a big deal. 

So if you're wondering whether Oregon undergrads really need chairs with the same leather found in Ferraris, you're missing the point. Louisville, once a middling Kentucky commuter school, has quintupled its research budget in the last 12 years, simply by moving games to Tuesday in a deal with ESPN. Viewership of Louisville games has since skyrocketed - leading to new donors, recruits, and sports stadiums. And some of that money is even financing efforts in the classroom. 

When it comes to the entertainment industry, football is king, and that can cause some inconsistencies. As disgruntled executives from the content provider Viacom (VIA) point out, Disney's ESPN gets to charge more from cable providers than Viacom does for all of their other channels combined. ESPN is four times the cost of the next most expensive channel. 

ESPN's practices have even garnered the attention of the FCC and the Justice Department. Both organizations have looked into the network's practice of buying rights to more games than it can possibly air, considered an anti-competitive practice. However, there's still some market share for Fox Sports, which already has an extensive collection of offerings in its portfolio, including a 49% stake in the Big Ten Conference.  

The impact of football on the current media landscape is undeniable - in fact, some would argue that it's literally the only thing keeping traditional "bundle" cable packages around. Senator John McCain, among many others, wants to allow customers to purchase channels individually. Therein lies an elusive target for the tech sector. Companies like Google (GOOG) are pursuing sports-streaming options of their own, which would allow viewers to drop cable altogether. However, the lengths media companies will go to protect their air-rights - Disney donated $400,000 to politicians who deal with this sort of thing since 2000 - shows just how important football is to a number of different markets. And we're only getting started. 

Click on the interactive chart to see analyst ratings over time. Sourced from Zacks Investment Research. 

<p>Your browser does not support iframes.</p>


1.Electronic Arts Inc. (EA, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Develops, markets, publishes, and distributes game software and content for video game consoles, personal computers, mobile phones, tablets and electronic readers, hand held game players, and the Internet. Market cap at $8.47B, most recent closing price at $27.86.


2.McDonald's Corp. (MCD, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Operates as a foodservice retailer worldwide. Market cap at $95.44B, most recent closing price at $95.31.




3.Buffalo Wild Wings Inc. (BWLD, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Engages in the ownership, operation, and franchise of restaurants in the United States. Market cap at $2.03B, most recent closing price at $107.98.


4.CBS Corporation (CBS, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Operates as a mass media company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $32.22B, most recent closing price at $52.91.


5.Walt Disney Co. (DIS, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Operates as an entertainment company worldwide. Market cap at $110.55B, most recent closing price at $61.35.



6.Viacom, Inc. (VIA, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Operates as an entertainment content company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $38.18B, most recent closing price at $80.00.


7.Twenty First Century Fox, Inc. (FOX, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Operates as a diversified media and entertainment company worldwide. Market cap at $73.33B, most recent closing price at $32.18.


8.Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD, Earnings, Analysts, Financials):Engages in brewing and selling beer in North America, Latin America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. Market cap at $155.67B, most recent closing price at $96.85.



(List compiled by James Dennin. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research, all other data sourced from Finviz.)


Use Kapitall's Tools: Looking for ways to analyze this list?Use this article snapshot as a launch pad: Simply click on the links, and use Kapitall's tab navigation to browse through the data...



Analyze These Ideas: Getting Started

Read descriptions for all companies mentioned Access a performance overview for all stocks in the list Compare analyst ratings for the companies mentioned Compare analyst ratings to annual returns for stocks mentioned Real-Time Opinion: Scan the latest tweets about these companies (feed will open in a new window)

Dig Deeper: Access Company Snapshots, Charts, Filings

Electronic Arts Inc.(EA, Chart, Download SEC Filings) McDonald's Corp.(MCD, Chart, Download SEC Filings) Buffalo Wild Wings Inc.(BWLD, Chart, Download SEC Filings) CBS Corporation(CBS, Chart, Download SEC Filings) Walt Disney Co.(DIS, Chart, Download SEC Filings) Viacom, Inc.(VIA, Chart, Download SEC Filings) Twenty First Century Fox, Inc.(FOX, Chart, Download SEC Filings) Anheuser-Busch InBev(BUD, Chart, Download SEC Filings) 



© Kapitall, Inc. All rights reserved. Kapitall Wire is a division of Kapitall, Inc. Kapitall Generation, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Kapitall, Inc.

Kapitall Wire offers free cutting edge investing ideas, intended for educational information purposes only. It should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell securities, or any other product or service provided by Kapitall Inc., and its affiliate companies.

Open a free account today get access to virtual cash portfolios, cutting-edge tools, stock market insights, and a live brokerage platform through our affiliated company, Kapitall Generation, LLC. 

Securities products and services are offered by Kapitall Generation, LLC - a FINRA/SIPC member.