Analyst: Intuitive Surgical Could Lead Its Market For Another Decade

The analyst warned that increasing competition might be encroaching on the company's monopoly

by Lillian Currens

Published on Jul 2, 2019 at 10:24 AM

Healthcare stock Intuitive Surgical Inc (NASDAQ:ISRG) is slightly lower this morning on a comment from BTIG. The analyst predicted the firm's monopoly over the robotic surgery market may end in the coming years amid stiff competition from the likes of UK-based robotics firm CMR Surgical, which could receive Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for its Versius robot within two years. However, BTIG believes Intuitive will remain the market leader for the next five to 10 years. ISRG is set to snap its three-day win streak, down 0.4% to trade at $526.71. 

On the charts, the shares of ISRG have been attempting a comeback since gapping lower in late April, following an unimpressive earnings report. The stock subsequently bottomed out at a four-month low of $458.27 in early June. Lately the security has managed to find its footing atop its 60-day moving average, but has petered out at the $533 level several times in recent weeks.  

The majority of analysts are still incredibly bullish on the stock, with 13 of the 16 in coverage calling it a "strong buy." The consensus 12-month target price of $577.81, however, holds just a 9.7% premium to current levels. 

Options traders have taken an optimistic stance, too, with 1.47 calls bought for every put on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) during the last 50 days. This ratio sits in the 77th percentile of its annual range, suggesting a healthier than usual appetite for bullish bets of late. 


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