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Credit crunch slams carriers

A number of stories hit the wire yesterday about how the credit crunch is impacting carriers.  AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said Tuesday that his company is unable to sell commercial paper for terms any longer than overnight.

It’s not that short-term borrowing is unreasonably expensive, Stephenson said. A shortage of buyers for the debt means such borrowing is not as readily available as it had been even three weeks ago, he said.

Meanwhile, Sprint continues to reel, as credit downgrades and now the subprime mortgage crisis hit it.

Sprint has made some progress in reducing its exposure to customers affected by subprime problems through the tightening of credit checks, the company’s iDEN network, acquired in its 2005 purchase of Nextel, continues to lose high-revenue-generating customers.

As we discussed on Tuesday’s Squawkbox, some of the hardest hit will be infrastructure providers who depend on debt to build out and maintain their networks.

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