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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Data: eMarketer; Chart: Axios Visuals

The pandemic will drive cable and satellite TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever, according to the most recent data from eMarketer.

Driving the news: Entertainment giants are beginning to pivot from linear TV t0 streaming, but with that pivot comes messy math.

  • Cord-cutting: At least 3 large media firms expect to lose 50 million traditional TV subscribers in the next five years. per CNBC. AT&T and Verizon both reported sluggish earnings around their media businesses last quarter.
  • Long-tail channels: Networks have discussed further cutting long-tail cable channels that are weighing down bundle negotiations. Some of the "long-tail" channels being floated in reports are household names, like E! and Oxygen.
  • Regional sports: Regional sports networks are struggling to reach distribution deals as the pandemic eats at live sports. Creditors are eyeing a possible debt restructuring of Sinclair's regional sports unit.

What's next: The simultaneous pivot will force even more competition onto the already saturated streaming landscape. Netflix shares tumbled last week after missing modest Q3 subscriber forecasts.

  • HBO Max was able to double what it calls "activations" to its service last quarter, but activations are sign-ups to its service from people already paying for the app via their cable subscription.

Go deeper

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Jun 26, 2020 - Sports

Universities cut sports teams, as they struggle with coronavirus fallout

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As universities scramble to survive the financial fallout of the coronavirus, sports teams are being cut, abruptly ending thousands of student-athletes' careers and exposing a collegiate sports model that many believe is broken.

Why it matters: With concern about the fall football season growing by the day, the fear is that the cuts have only just begun.

Sports bettors may be a driving force behind the stock market surge

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Professional investors have largely abandoned the stock market amid the coronavirus pandemic, but sports bettors and bored millennials have jumped into the retail stock trading market with both feet.

Why it matters: They may be a driving force pushing U.S. stocks to their recent highs — and potentially driving them further.

Sep 4, 2019 - Sports

The NFL's slow embrace of sports betting

Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The NFL is embracing sports betting this season in ways that it never would before the Supreme Court legalized the activity across the nation in 2018.

Why it matters: Last September, the NFL called for Congress to step in and regulate legalized sports betting. This September, the NFL is opening its season with a full-fledged casino partner (Caesars) and an official data distributor (Sportradar) for the first time ever.

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