On Monday, April 4, AT&T had two symbols, T and T WD, since it trades in two different ways
- If you sell the symbol “T” you are selling the AT&T company shares and the right to receive a spinoff/merger company called Warner Bros Discovery (WBD)
- If you sell just the symbol "T WD", you are selling the AT&T shares, but retain the right to receive the WBD spinoff
- Warner Bros Discovery is now selling separately under the symbol WBDWV
Today, April 4, AT&T stock (T) closed at a price of $24.18. However, buyers and sellers of this stock should be aware of major changes in the stock's trading.
If you sell the stock under the T symbol, you give up both your AT&T shares and the right to receive the new Warner Bros Discovery company spinoff. The latter is a result of a spinoff of the Time Warner division from AT&T and a merger with Discovery Inc (DISCA, DISCB, DISCK). That new company is called Warner Bros Discovery. It will eventually have the NASDAQ trading symbol WBD, but for now, its symbol is “WBDWV” until the merger closes.
However, if you buy or sell the symbol “T WD" you buy or sell only the AT&T company shares, not right to have the spinoff/merger shares of WBD when the merger closes.
The price of "T WD" closed at $18.10 on April 4. In addition, the price of WBDWV was $25.50. This makes sense since the AT&T shareholders will receive 71.0% of the WBD shares. So, therefore, 0.71 x $25.50 (the WBDWV price) equals $18.105. That is equal to the T WD price, although the half-cent difference is likely due to arbitrage opportunities in the market.
All of this was detailed in a special 8-K filing on March 30 by AT&T. as well as an announcement on March 25 that the record date is April 5. That set the ex-date as April 4, as it ex-date is always one business day before the record date.
On the record date, each shareholder of AT&T will be entitled to receive 0.24 shares of WBD for every share of AT&T they own. For every 100 shares of AT&T, they get 24 shares of WBD.
By the way, one important point to be made here is the new dividend yield for AT&T shareholders. AT&T has announced it will pay an annual $1.11 dividend for AT&T post the spinoff of WBD. So, based on today's price of T WD at $18.10, the new dividend yield is $1.11/$18.10, or 6.13%.
It is not clear yet whether the new WBD shares will pay a dividend.
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This is not financial advice and you should not rely on my analysis to buy or sell any stock. I am not undertaking to induce you to buy or sell any securities.
I am relying on the “publisher’s exclusion” in the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 to provide this information without any personalized or individualized investment advice.