Ctrip Revenue Beat Has Analysts' Attention

Mizuho, J.P. Morgan Securities, and Benchmark all lifted their price targets on CTRP

Deputy Editor
Mar 5, 2019 at 10:00 AM
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The shares of Ctrip.com International Ltd (NASDAQ:CTRP) are soaring in early trading, after the Chinese travel concern reported fourth-quarter revenue that beat analysts' expectations. The win that was attributed to the company's Skyscanner booking program, as well as strengthening flight and international hotel businesses. As a  result, CTRP stock is up 14.3% at $39.99 -- pacing for its best day since 2015. 

CTRP bottomed out at three-year low of $25.00 on Nov. 13, but has since rallied 59% atop its 20-day moving average. The equity is now on pace to end atop its 200-day moving average for the first time since June.

Ctrip's revenue news has analysts flocking to the stock. J.P. Morgan Securities upgraded the stock to "overweight" from "neutral," and hiked its price target to $45 from $33. Benchmark raised its price target to $48 from $41, and Mizuho hiked its price target $35 from $31. The security might be due for even more upgrades, too. Prior to today's pop, seven of the 13 analysts following CTRP slapped it with a tepid "hold." What's more, the consensus 12-month target price of $34.48 is at a 12% discount to current levels. 

A short squeeze could spark more tailwinds as bears begin to hit the exits. Short interest jumped 16.2% in the last reporting period. The 17.46 million shares sold short now represent 4.1% of the stock's available float. At Ctrip stock's average daily trading volume, it would take six days to buy back these pessimistic positions. 

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