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Field Day for Media Stocks, With Viacom Hitting All-Time High


Disney, AMC Networks, and CBS were also up on the day.

Shares of entertainment conglomerate Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB) hit an all-time high in intraday trading on Monday after Nomura Securities reaffirmed its Buy rating on the stock and raised its price target.

As of 3:47 p.m. EDT, Viacom was trading at $65.43 per share after hitting a high of $65.44 earlier in the day.

Normura analyst Michael Nathanson had reiterated his Buy rating on Viacom in the morning, and also raising his target by $2 to $68.

According to Nathanson, the ratings trend at Viacom's TV channels, including Nickelodeon, MTV, BET, and Comedy Central, was ticking upwards, which would enable the entertainment giant to improve its advertising revenue.

"We believe that the combination of a very cheap multiple, improving aggregate kids 2-11 viewing trends, increases in Nick's ratings, and the potential for improving second-half 2013 kids 2-11 film advertising makes Viacom a continued name to own," he wrote in a report.

"We believe Viacom's low relative multiple will continue to rise in expectation of positive earnings trends to come later in FY13," Nathanson continued.

Viacom was not the only Hollywood stock that popped in today's trading. Disney (NYSE:DIS) touched $58.78, also an all-time high. As of 3:48 p.m. EDT, it was at $58.65. The stock has enjoyed a robust run in recent weeks, setting a slew of record highs along the way.

Earlier, Disney announced that it will lay off some 150 workers at its Walt Disney Studios music and theatre divisions. The company is also closing down its LucasArts videogame division, letting go of another 150 employees in the process.

Meanwhile, Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) shares peaked today at $58.27, which is near its 52-week high of $58.68. It was trading at $58.20 as of 3:49 p.m. EDT. AMC Networks (NASDAQ:AMCX), whose highly-buzzed series Mad Men returned for a sixth season last night, also matched its 52-week high of $64.06, while CBS Corporation (NYSE:CBS) improved 1.98% to $46.10 in late afternoon trading.

Also see:

US Tech Overseas: eBay Expands in India; Zynga Plays Poker, Facebook Joke Causes Stir in China

The Basics on Bitcoin: 11 Things to Know About This Suddenly 'Hot' Digital Currency

Could a New BlackBerry Tablet Be More Than Just an April Fools' Joke?

Twitter: @sterlingwong

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