Planet Fitness Stock Sinks on Negative Press

The brokerage bunch disagrees, however

Assistant Editor
Dec 15, 2020 at 10:49 AM
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The shares of Planet Fitness Inc (NYSE:PLNT) are slipping today, down 1.9% at $74.70 at last check, after receiving some negative attention in The Wall Street Journal's Heard On The Street Column. The author said that the pandemic has seriously squashed Planet Fitness' business outlook, though this negative angle is not shared amongst the entire brokerage bunch, as at least two bull notes rolled out for PLNT yesterday.

More specifically, BMO and J.P. Morgan Securities hit the fitness center operator with price-target hikes, the biggest of which came from the former. BMO raised its price target to $80 from $70, alongside a repeated "buy" rating, and said it feels the pandemic will shutdown smaller operators and increase the company's market share. Coming into today, 10 of the 14 in coverage sported a "strong buy" rating, while the remaining four called it a "hold" or worse. However, the 12-month consensus price target of $73.71 is a 1.1% discount to current levels, signaling some price-target hikes in the near future could act as additional tailwinds.

On the charts, PLNT looked well on its way to recapturing pre-pandemic highs after it soared to $86.50 on Nov. 9 -- just shy of the equity's Feb. 19 annual high of $88.77. More recently, the shares have traded just above the $70 level, with support in place from the 20-day moving average. Meanwhile, Planet Fitness stock is hovering just above its year-to-date breakeven mark.

Lastly, shorts are taking their leave, evident by the fact that short interest has fallen 27.1% in the last two reporting periods. The 6.53 million shares make up 8% of the stock's available float, or four days' worth of pent-up buying power.

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