Media investors ended the week on a cheery note after the market recorded its strongest rally since early May. The benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 closed the day +1.9% following a better than expected jobs report for July as well as indications that the European Central Bank will take more aggressive steps to address the continent’s debt crisis. That contributed to a 2.1% increase in the Dow Jones U.S. Media Index — a 52-week high for the group which is up 25.5% over the period. Big Media stocks also hitting 52-week highs on Friday included CBS (+6.1% following a relatively strong Q2 earnings report last night), Time Warner (+1.8%), Comcast (+1.4%) and News Corp (+1.4%). Others in the group also did well including Sony (+3.6%), Viacom (+3%), and Disney (+1.6%). Media stocks with the biggest gains included Carmike (+9.8%), Entercom (+9.5%), Rovi (+8.9%), Cumulus (+8.1%), and LIN TV (+6.9%). The handful of companies losing ground included A.H. Belo (-1.6%), Cinedigm (-1.5%), Crown Media (-0.6%), and Outdoor Channel (-0.5%).
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