Analyst Update: Google Inc, King Digital Entertainment PLC, and Vipshop Holdings Ltd ADR

Analysts adjusted their ratings on GOOGL, KING, and VIPS

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Nov 20, 2014 at 1:55 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Analysts are weighing in today on Internet powerhouse Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), "Candy Crush" parent King Digital Entertainment PLC (NYSE:KING), and China-based e-retailer Vipshop Holdings Ltd - ADR (NYSE:VIPS). Here's a quick look at today's brokerage notes on GOOGL, KING, and VIPS.

  • GOOGL is off 0.7% to trade at $543.22, following a price-target cut to $722 from $723 at Credit Suisse, which nevertheless underscored its "outperform" rating. On the news front, the company reached a patent-litigation settlement with Rockstar, but is officially out as Mozilla Firefox's default search engine. Year-to-date, shares of Google Inc are down more than 3%, and have underperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by roughly 10 percentage points during the past two months. Nonetheless, the brokerage crowd is very bullish toward the stock. Twenty-seven out of 31 analysts tracking GOOGL have given it a "buy" or better rating, and the stock's consensus 12-month price target of $650.05 stands at a 20% premium to the current share price -- and in uncharted waters. In other words, the security could be on the verge of additional bearish brokerage notes, which could result in headwinds.

  • KING is rallying on a price-target hike to $16 from $13 at Deutsche Bank -- though the firm held on to its "hold" opinion. At last check, the equity was 3.8% higher at $16.55, and has topped the SPX by 32.6 percentage points during the past 20 days. During the most recent reporting period, short interest fell nearly 10%, which may account for some of King Digital Entertainment PLC's recent gains. However, 22.5% of the stock's float is still dedicated to short interest, and would take roughly three weeks to buy back, at typical daily trading levels. In other words, there's plenty of sideline cash available to keep propelling KING up the charts.

  • VIPS has added 1.2% this afternoon to hover near $22.71, after Macquarie -- which underscored an "outperform" assessment on the shares -- upped its price target by $1 to $28. On the flip side, HSBC slashed its target to $24 from $27.70, and downgraded the equity to "neutral" from "overweight," following yesterday's poorly received earnings report. Meanwhile, Vipshop Holdings Ltd - ADR has been flying up the charts, adding more than 170% year-to-date. Not surprisingly, traders at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have blazed a bullish trail toward the equity. VIPS' 10-day call/put volume ratio across these three exchanges is 2.76, higher than 96% of comparable readings from the past year.

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