As Investors Gear Up for Analyst Day, is Netgear Stock Worth the Risk?

NTGR is down over 28% in 2021

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NetGear, Inc. (NASDAQ:NTGR) is a multinational computer networking company that produces networking hardware for consumers, businesses, and service providers. The company's products cover a variety of technologies such as wireless Wi-Fi and LTE, ethernet, and powerline. Its products include wired and wireless devices for broadband access and network connectivity.

On Wednesday, Dec. 1, Netgear's senior leadership team announced plans to host a virtual financial analyst day on Thursday, Dec. 9. According to the press release, the computer networking company’s executive team will present its vision for Netgear's future at the event.

The security bottomed out at a near 18-month low of $26.34 on Nov. 29, though since then the stock looks to be on a slow climb higher. In fact, the security looks ready to clear recent pressure at the 30-day moving average during today's session for the first time since mid-October, and just snapped a three-week losing streak last week. For the year, NTGR is still down 28%. 

ntgr chart dec 6

Short sellers have been jumping ship during the quiet rebound, with short interest down 17.7% in the last two-week reporting period. The 3.49 million shares sold short make up 12.3% of the stock's available float still, and would take over 11 days to cover at NTGR's average daily pace of trading, meaning a short squeeze could be a possibility, should these bears continue to hit the exits. 

Fundamentally, Netgear has struggled to find consistent top- and bottom-line growth in recent years, despite the computer networking company’s revenues and net income growing 29% and 215%, respectively, since fiscal 2019. Between fiscal 2017 and fiscal 2019, NTGR's revenues declined 29% and, in fiscal 2018, Netgear reported $9 million in net losses. That marks a $28.5 million decrease from the prior year. In addition, Netgear stock has a forward price-earnings ratio of 16.64, which is not a bad valuation but does indicate an expected decrease in earnings when compared to NTGR’s current price-earnings ratio of 10.73.

Nonetheless, Netgear stock’s valuation is intriguing, trading at a very attractive price-sales ratio of 0.68. The computer networking company also has a strong balance sheet with $353.3 million in cash and $34.6 million in total debt, potentially setting up NTGR as a recovery play. However, the stock’s shaky fundamentals means that there is a high-level of risk for its investors.


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