Robertson Stephens downgraded Western Wireless (WWCA) to market perform from buy.
Analyst Frank Marsala says the outlook is just too cloudy for him to maintain his buy rating. He notes the announcement Monday of a network sharing deal between AT&T Wireless and Cingular for the buildout and operation of 3,000 highway miles in various states where Western Wireless is present. Marsala believes poor visibility is extended into 2003 (and beyond). He says consolidation also becomes more unlikely, leaving investors with a more uncertain outlook, and bringing closer the possibility that the company could face debt covenant issues in 2003.