Sales Growth Sends ChinaNet to Top of Nasdaq

Susquehanna raised its INTC price target ahead of next week's earnings report

Karee Venema
Apr 17, 2018 at 3:10 PM
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The U.S. stock market is pacing toward a big win, as Wall Street reacts to the latest batch of corporate earnings reports. Among individual names making big moves are blue-chip software stock Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), Chinese internet ad specialist ChinaNet Online Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:CNET), and U.K.-based biotech GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (NASDAQ:GWPH). Here's a quick look at what's moving shares of INTC, CNET, and GWPH.

Intel Price Target Raised Ahead of Earnings

Intel stock has jumped 2.3% to trade at $53.60, after Susquehanna boosted its price target to $62 from $56 -- a level not seen since the height of the dot-com bubble. The brokerage firm said it thinks first-quarter Intel earnings will be slightly higher than expected, on strong server unit growth.

Today's positive price action just extends the stock's recent trajectory, with INTC up nearly 35% since taking a sharp bounce off its 120-day moving average on Feb. 9. And after pulling back to its 50-day moving average -- a reliable buy signal over the past year -- in the wake of its mid-March 17-year high of $53.78, Intel shares are now within a chip-shot of taking out this notable milestone.

Nevertheless, there's plenty of room for more analysts to upwardly revise their outlooks, especially if Intel earnings come in stronger than forecast after the close next Thursday, April 26. Nine analysts still maintain a "hold" or "sell" recommendation, while the average 12-month price target stands at just $54.41.

ChinaNet Shares Surge on Impressive Revenue Growth

ChinaNet Online Holdings is near the top of the Nasdaq, up 38.6% to trade at $3.42. The Beijing-based firm said fiscal fourth-quarter sales rose 64.1% to $15.3 million, as search engine and data services revenue more than doubled to $13.1 million.

Looking at the charts, CNET stock surged to a seven-year high of $11.90 back on Jan. 4, when the company announced a blockchain technology venture. A months-long pullback from here was eventually contained by the stock's 200-day moving average in early April, but the $4 region emerged as a ceiling in today's bull gap.

GWPH Stock Jumps on Positive Epidiolex FDA Review

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave a favorable review for GW Pharmaceuticals' cannabis-based drug Epidiolex, which treats a severe form of childhood epilepsy. Additionally, Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated its "overweight" rating and $192 price target, saying it was "smooth sailing" ahead of this Thursday's advisory committee meeting.

In reaction, GWPH has shot 10.2% higher to trade at $132.87 -- on track for its best day since November 2017 -- filling a late-February bear gap caused by a weak earnings report, and edging north of its year-to-date breakeven mark. However, the $134-$135 region looms overhead, and has kept a tight lid on the shares since June 2015.

Today's sharp rally is likely getting a hand from a potential short squeeze. It would take short sellers nearly seven days to cover their bearish bets, at GWPH stock's average daily pace of trading.

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