Analyst Downgrades: LinkedIn Corp, Tableau Software Inc, and Twitter Inc

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings and price targets on LinkedIn Corp (LNKD), Tableau Software Inc (DATA), and Twitter Inc (TWTR)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Feb 5, 2016 at 9:27 AM

Analysts are weighing in on professional networking portal LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD), tech firm Tableau Software Inc (NYSE:DATA), and microblogging platform Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on LNKD, DATA, and TWTR.

  • After closing last night at $192.28, LNKD is getting battered in pre-market trading, down 32.5% and on pace to open at a roughly three-year low. Pressuring the shares is the company's weak current-quarter profit forecast, which is offsetting a fourth-quarter earnings beat. It's worth noting that today's expected gap lower would represent a far bigger post-earnings swing than usual. Adding insult to injury, it seems like every brokerage firm on Wall Street has doled out a negative note. Among those lowering their ratings to the equivalent of a "hold" are RBC, Mizuho, Cowen and Company, Raymond James, SunTrust Robinson, Monness Crespi Hardt, and J.P. Morgan Securities -- with the latter removing LinkedIn Corp from its "Analyst Focus" list. Most of the aforementioned analysts (and plenty of others) also cut their price targets on the shares. One group that would cheer LNKD's demise is option traders. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 0.85 ranks in the bearishly skewed 62nd annual percentile.

  • DATA is bracing for a 40% loss out of the gate -- and a two-year low -- as concerns about the company's license revenue growth overshadow an earnings beat. Meanwhile, analysts are piling on the stock's bearish bandwagon, with no fewer than 17 slashing their price targets. In fact, Maxim set the gloomiest expectations at $40, representing all-time-low territory for Tableau Software Inc. The stock has fallen fast and furious since hitting a record high of $131.34 in late July, down close to 38% at $81.75. Meanwhile, option traders have been setting their sights even lower. DATA's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.67 sits just 3 percentage points from a 12-month peak.

  • TWTR is no stranger to negative analyst attention, and that's certainly bearing out today, with Wedbush cutting its price target to $20 from $30 ahead of next Wednesday night's earnings report. As a result, the stock is down 1.4% pre-market, which would just add to its year-to-date loss of nearly 27%, as of Thursday's settlement at $16.91. Not surprisingly, option traders have been upping the bearish ante on Twitter Inc over the past couple weeks. Specifically, the stock's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.49 outstrips 92% of all others from the past year.
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