Auction BlockOn Friday, the FCC released opening prices for each auction-eligible full power and Class A television station.  A list of the prices is available here.

We broke out our calculators to make some sense of these opening price offers and provide the following quick analysis:

  • WCBS-TV received the highest price in the country — $900 million.   This is the result of a change in the FCC’s methodology to ensure that a UHF station received the maximum price offer.  Otherwise, WABC-TV, as the station with the greatest volume, would have received the $900 million price–but that price would have been reduced to $540 million to account for the fact that WABC-TV is a VHF station.
  • Prices go down fairly quickly from there.  Only eight stations–all in the New York DMA–will receive opening prices in excess of $800 million, and just five more will receive opening prices above $700 million.
  • The average opening price to go off the air is $182 million.
  • The FCC has determined that 325 stations are not needed under any scenario and therefore will not receive prices to participate in the auction.  21 of these stations are assigned to the top-25 DMAs, including one assigned to the Los Angeles DMA.
  • Remember, these are only opening prices.  Stations will see their prices go down each round until they can no longer be repacked in their “home band,” at which point they will be conditionally frozen at the current price.

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