NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Shares of Time Warner Inc. fell Monday after an analyst lowered her rating on the media and entertainment company.
Merrill Lynch analyst Jessica Reif Cohen lowered her rating on the New York-based company to an intermediate-term "accumulate" from a "buy" because of "a lack of near-term catalysts" and "difficult comparisons for the next two to three quarters."
Shares of Time Warner (TWX), the parent company of CNNfn, were off nearly 6 percent in midday trade, falling 3-13/16 to 63.
"We continue to rate Time Warner a long-term 'buy,' given its depth of management, financial strength and unique mix of both content and distribution assets," Cohen wrote.
Cohen also wrote that the only significant near-term factor that could drive Time Warner shares higher is the restructuring of the Time Warner Entertainment unit, which includes the Warner Brothers movie studio and Home Box Office.
In a statement, Gerald M. Levin, Time Warner's chairman and chief executive officer, said the company is on track for another record year in 1999.
"While we are still in the budget process for year 2000, we remain confident with respect to the solid short-term and long-term outlook for our company," Levin said.