Tribune subordinated debentures due 2029 (NYSE: TXA) opened at $17.26 -- and plunged as soon as word of the bankruptcy petition broke. TXA closed at $1.07, down $16.92, or an astonishing 94%. There was a real rush to the exits on TXA, with 635,256 shares changing hands -- more than 5 times the normal volume.If you listen carefully, you can hear the death rattle of old media.
TXA has traded as high as $53.34 in the past 52 weeks. It certainly didn't help TXA's case when Fitch Ratings not only assigned a D grade to Tribune's issuer default rating -- but specifically warned holders of TXA that they should expect zero payment in a "distress situation." Precisely, of course, the kind of situation Tribune finds itself in now.