Amazon, Netflix Could Soar More Than 12% Despite Hot Start

Date | 19-01-2018 - 03:59 PM Article Type | Stock Markets Region | United States

Barclays analysts initiated bullish coverage of Netflix, while Stifel analysts bumped their price target on Amazon. Both hit 52-week highs as a result.

By Bret Kenwell

FANG stocks have gotten off to a robust start so far in 2018. Facebook (FB) , Amazon (AMZN) and Alphabet (GOOGL) are up quickly higher by about 6% so far on the year. Netflix (NFLX) , though, is far outpacing all of its acronym peers, adding 11.5% to its share price since the start of the year.

On Thursday, both Netflix and Amazon hit new 52-week highs and investors can thank the analysts. Let's start first with Amazon.

Stifel analyst Scott Devitt said the company's upcoming fourth-quarter earnings results should reveal "healthy e-commerce holiday sales" and continued momentum in Prime memberships. Devitt is also looking for Amazon's Web Services business to post impressive momentum as well.

Speaking longer term, Devitt says Amazon is "well positioned" for 2018 and 2019, as its core growth pillars remain intact. E-commerce, cloud-computing and its A.I.-powered smart speakers all continue to do well. Its international business shows big potential, as does its grocery segment following the purchase of Whole Foods Market.

Although Devitt already had a buy rating on Amazon, he bumped his price target to $1,425 from $1,313. His new target implies about 13% upside from current levels.

So, what about Netflix? Barclays' analyst Kannan Venkateshwar initiated Netflix stock with an overweight rating and $245 price target. From Wednesday's close, that represents roughly 15% upside to a stock that's already rallied some 65% over the last 12 months.

Netflix could "become one of the most successful media companies" if it's able to grow its subscribers faster than its content costs, he argues. At least in the short-term, the risk is relatively low that Netflix will miss consensus subscriber estimates, he adds.

Author: Heng V. Mony
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