That, or Robert Marcus needs a little training in positive spin:

The environment for cable television subscribers is “very, very weak,” according to Time Warner Cable Inc. (TWC) Chief Financial Officer Robert Marcus, and the company may actually see the total number of subscribers to its television, Internet and telephone services shrink during the current quarter.

The statement, made Wednesday at a Bank of America Merrill Lynch conference in California, caused Time Warner Cable stock to lose as much as 5.3% in Wednesday afternoon trading immediately after Marcus delivered his opening remarks.

Marcus said August saw the “usual uptick in subscriber performance,” as children went back to college, but unemployment, high vacancy rates in housing and “really anemic new home formation” are “resulting in some pretty weak subscriber numbers.”

Time Warner Cable Stock Sinks After CFO’s Downbeat Remarks [Dow Jones]