PayPal Could Be Amazon's Next Victim

Analysts remain bullish on PYPL for now

Managing Editor
Apr 6, 2018 at 9:56 AM
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PayPal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:PYPL) is down 1.1% to trade at $76.12 this morning, after the Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon (AMZN) was considering adding a person-to-person payment option to its Alexa technology. Such a feature would put Amazon in direct competition with Paypal. 

PayPal stock has added an impressive 77% year-over-year, and topped out at a record high of $86.32 on Jan. 31. Since then, however, the equity has pulled back, consolidating around the $73-$74 region, which coincides with the stock's 160-day moving average. This trendline served as support for PYPL in late 2016 and early 2017, and cushioned a retreat earlier this week.

Analysts have not yet reacted to the Amazon rumors, though most remain optimistic. Of the 33 brokerages covering the equity, 27 rate it a "buy" or "strong buy," with not a single "sell" on the books. Furthermore, PayPal's average 12-month price target stands up at $85.23.

In the options pits, traders have preferred calls. Data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) confirms a substantial call bias, with long calls handily doubling puts in the past 10 days.

Finally, it's worth noting the security has been good to premium buyers in the past year. The stock's Schaeffer's Volatility Scorecard (SVS) comes in at a lofty 91 out of 100. That means PYPL stock has exceeded options traders' volatility expectations during the past 12 months.

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