AT&T PULLS PLUG ON TIGER

Loss to shareholders of companies associated with Tiger at up to $12 billion

AT&T has dropped embattled golfer Tiger Woods, according to a statement from the telecom giant. “We are ending our sponsorship agreement with Tiger Woods and wish him well in the future,” said AT&T. The 33-year-old golfer won the AT&T National tournament this year at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, MD and has served as its host since the event was created in 2007. PGA Tour spokesman Ty Votaw said that since Woods is on indefinite leave from professional golf, he will not serve as host for the 2010 AT&T National slated for Aronimink Country Club outside Philadelphia June 29 to July 4.

The Tiger Woods Foundation will continue to be the beneficiary of the AT&T National, under a contract that runs through 2014, Votaw said. AT&T joins Accenture in severing ties with Woods. Gillette and Tag Heuer have scaled back sponsorships with Woods. $12B ‘Infidelity Bill’ Two U.S. professors have estimated the loss to shareholders of companies associated with Tiger at up to $12 billion.

University of California, Davis economics professors Victor Stango and Christopher Knittel studied the stock market for 13 days after Woods crashed his car outside his Florida home on November 27. They focused on nine sponsors: Accenture, American Express, AT&T, Tiger Woods PGA Tour Golf (Electronic Arts), Gillette, Nike, Gatorade, TLC Laser Eye Centres and Golf Digest. Their calculation is based on a comparison of returns for Woods’s sponsors to those of the total stock market and of each sponsor’s closest competitor.

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