The power of the acolytes attending the nether world of the stock markets was demonstrated yesterday after stock in WPP Group plunged by seven per cent after US investment bank Goldman Sachs cut its earning estimates for a number of European media groups.

WPP, although the worst hit by Goldman’s rune-casting, was not the sole casualty. Also named in the earnings estimate were BSkyB (whose share value dipped by 0.9%) and Carlton Communications (down 1%). Perversely, Granada Media, Mediaset of Italy, and VNU all saw their stock rise marginally.

According to Goldman, it still favoured WPP and BSkyB but had cut its estimates for all media companies “to create a sustainable base from which to value stocks".

The oracle of short-termism then delivered its ultimate irony: “While 2001 is shaping up to be a disappointing year, we believe investors should still be focusing on the longer-term issues.”

News Source: CampaignLive (UK)