The largest publicly traded music companies gained this week as investors digested the impacts of another increase in the Federal Reserve’s benchmark interest rate.
Billboard‘s Global Music Index rose 2.1% this week to 1,213.30 despite 11 of its 20 stocks being in negative territory. Shares of Universal Music Group, the most valuable component of the 20-stock Index, rose 6.7% to 22.82 euros ($24.58). K-pop company HYBE rose 4.5% to 187,500 won ($144.70), Warner Music Group improved 4.3% to $31.50, SiriusXM rose 3.6% to $3.77 and Spotify was up 1% to $128.30.
The Index’s greatest gainer was streaming company LiveOne, which climbed 13.1% to $1.12. On Tuesday, LiveOne said it is extending the record date for the previously announced spinoff of its PodcastOne subsidiary to April 7. “We expect the special dividend and trading of PodcastOne to begin in April,” said Robert Ellin, LiveOne CEO and chairman. The company also announced it gained 136,000 paid subscribers since Jan. 1, to more than 2 million monthly paying members, and plans to reach 2.75 million subscribers by the end of the year.
Broadcast radio company Audacy, a relatively small component of the Index, had the week’s biggest decline of 21.4%. On March 16, a B. Riley analyst cut the price target for Audacy shares from 50 cents to 10 cents. The stock closed at 11 cents per share on Friday and is down 52% year to date.
The U.S. Federal Reserve Bank raised its benchmark interest rate a quarter of a percentage point on Wednesday — from 4.75% to 5% — and suggested additional hikes may not be needed “to return inflation to 2% over time,” the Federal Open Market Committee said in a statement. That decision sent markets into negative territory on Wednesday: both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq composite fell 1.6% while the S&P 500 dropped 1.7%. But stocks rallied on Thursday and Friday. The Dow finished the week up 1.2% while the Nasdaq composite and S&P 500 rose 1.7% and 1.4%, respectively.