Intelsat Holders Ponder Cryptic FCC Tweet Hours Before Decision

(Bloomberg) -- A cryptic tweet by Federal Communications Commissioner Brendan Carr is adding mystery to the Intelsat SA drama as FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is expected to unveil the agency’s plans for C-band airwaves on Thursday.

Some investors speculated what Carr meant when he said “a lot can change in 24 hours.” When reached by email, Carr told Bloomberg it “was just a waffle tweet” and had “no more meaning.”

Pai is set to announce plans for an auction of C-band spectrum and a key issue is how much to pay satellite providers including Intelsat and SES SA. New Street Research said Wednesday that there’s a significant chance the C-Band Alliance “walks out of the process” should Pai choose a fixed payment auction that gives the group less than $16 billion.

Intelsat fell as much as 13% on Thursday after the company was said to be considering a possible Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing if U.S. regulators don’t increase the amount of compensation the company would receive for giving up some of its airwaves.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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