Analyst: Management 'Destroyed Value' for This Retail Stock

Bloomin' Brands may be exploring a potential sale

by Karee Venema

Published on Nov 22, 2017 at 10:13 AM

Analysts are weighing in on cloud name salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE:CRM), Outback Steakhouse parent Bloomin' Brands Inc (NASDAQ:BLMN), and retail stock GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on shares of CRM, BLMN, and GME.

Salesforce Stock Downgraded After Dismal Profit Forecast

Analysts were quick to weigh in on Salesforce.com, after the cloud concern unveiled its quarterly results last night. While a number of brokerages raised their respective price targets on the back of a third-quarter beat, a lower-than-expected fourth-quarter profit forecast earned CRM stock a downgrade to "neutral" from "buy" at Roth Capital. In reaction, the shares are down 2.3% to trade at $106.29.

Nevertheless, it's been a strong year for the tech stock, which is up roughly 57% in 2017 -- and hit a record high of $109.19 just yesterday. As such, the equity's 14-day Relative Strength Index (RSI) closed last night at 78, well into overbought territory, suggesting a near-term pullback may have been in the cards.

BofA-Merrill Lynch Downgrades Bloomin' Brands Stock

Bloomin' Brands stock is down 2.4% to trade at $20.33, after BofA-Merrill Lynch downgraded the restaurant name to "neutral" from "buy" and cut its price target to $21 from $22. Just yesterday, the security shot 12.4% higher -- effectively filling a late-July bear gap -- on news the company may be exploring strategic alternatives, including a possible sale, at the encouragement of activist investor Jana Partners. Most analysts remain cautious toward BLMN stock, though. At last night's close, six of 11 brokerages maintained a "hold" or "strong sell" rating on the shares.

GameStop Earnings Reaction Catches Shorts Off Guard

GameStop stock is up 5.7% to trade at $17.70, after the video game retailer reported third-quarter earnings and revenue that came in above the consensus estimates. Not everyone was impressed, however, with Benchmark lowering its price target to $15 from $18. The brokerage firm issued harsh words for GME management, too, saying it has "destroyed value and their diversification strategy has failed."

Looking at the charts, GME stock has been in a long-term downtrend, shedding 30% year-to-date, and notching a new five-year low of $15.52 as recently as Nov. 15. Part of this downside has likely been a result of increased selling pressure from shorts. Short interest is up 36% from early April to 27.63 million shares, roughly 28% of GameStop's available float.

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