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Six Flags - or Six Feet Under?

Dan Snyder’s Six Flags corporation lost $51 million in this year’s second quarter, sending the stock down to a 52-week low of $3.18 a share.

But Six Flags president Mark Shapiro is a graduate of the Snyder school of eternal optimism. Even as Snyder’s Six Flags investment had very big paper losses, Shapiro was ebullient. He called a 3-percent rise in attendance “encouraging” and said some of the problems were caused by “unprecedented rain in the state of Texas.”

According to SEC documents, Shapiro has some 560,000 shares of Six Flags—500,000 granted to him as compensation. Last year, Shapiro bought 34,485 shares with his own money, at an average price of $6.58. After the selloff of Six Flags stock in July, Shapiro bought another 7,700 shares at an average of $3.65 per share.

Snyder holds about 11,500,000 shares of Six Flags that in 2006 were worth $137 million. In early August, the shares were worth $41 million.

If the Redskins lose to the Cowboys this fall, will Dan Snyder’s excuse be too much rain in Texas?

This piece originally appeared in the September 2007 edition of the magazine.

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