Analyst: Retrans rulemaking could help pay-TV providers

An effort by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to revise retransmission consent rules could help cable and satellite television companies, Paul Gallant of MF Global wrote Monday.

The FCC is expected to move forward Thursday with a proceeding that would edit the rules governing fee disputes between broadcasters and pay-TV providers. 

When the companies come to an impasse, consumers can lose certain channels if broadcasters pull their programming.

The FCC's decision to amend the rules governing these disputes is a positive for pay-TV companies, Gallant writes.

"We think the mere opening of this rulemaking should help cable and satellite operators like Time Warner Cable, Comcast, Cablevision, Charter, DirecTV, and Dish by exerting some indirect pressure on broadcasters to moderate their license fee requests in upcoming retrans negotiations," he said.