Drivers, Consumers Prefer Uber Over Lyft, Says UBS

The equity is down more than 75% in the last 12 months

Deputy Editor
Sep 26, 2022 at 10:09 AM
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It seems as though drivers and consumers prefer Uber (UBER) to LYFT Inc (NYSE:LYFT), at least according to a recently issued bear note from UBS. In its note, the analyst downgraded LYFT to "neutral" from "buy" and lowered its price target to $16 from $50, writing, "Our reduced optimism is supported by UBS Evidence Lab driver survey (Access dataset) and app data which indicates: drivers prefer Uber; Lyft is not drivers' main app; and Uber has more app downloads and usage across driver and consumers compared to Lyft."

Coming into today, the majority of analysts were optimistic, leaving room for more bear notes to roll in. Seventeen of the 27 in coverage still rate Lyft stock a "strong buy" or "buy." More price-target adjustments could be on the way as well, as the 12-month consensus target price of $30.86 is a massive 126.4% premium to Friday's close. Short interest fell 12.7% in the last two reporting periods, yet the 37.19 million shares sold short account for a healthy 12% of the stock's available float.

Options traders, on the other hand, are more put-biased, based on LYFT's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.02 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), which ranks in the 96th percentile of its annual range. In other words, options buyers have been initiating bearish bets over bullish at a faster-than-usual pace during the past two weeks.

Lyft stock is feeling the weight of UBS' bear note, last seen down 1.8% at $13.75. Since an early May bear gap pushed the shares below the $23 level, LYFT has failed to gain much ground, while the $12 area has stepped up as a floor. Year-over-year, the equity is off by more than 75%.


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