Alphabet Rises Following Earnings Beat As Revenue Jumps 34%

Following quarterly results, Oppenheimer analyst Jason Helfstein also raised his price target on Alphabet to $2,510 from $2,350, while keeping an Outperform rating on the shares. The analyst believes Alphabet is well-positioned to benefit from reopening tailwinds. While details are always limited, management highlighted strength of retail/shopping ads, with resurgence in travel activity, he added, pointing out that YouTube is benefiting from linear TV budgets shifting online to more performance-based ads.

Meanwhile, Jefferies analyst Brent Thill raised the firm's price target on Alphabet to $2,850 from $2,700 and kept a Buy rating on the shares following what he calls the company's second consecutive "big" quarter and ahead of what he expects will be "a third up next" given his view that upcoming second-quarter comps are "very easy." The analyst is modeling year-over-year growth of 44% for total gross revenue, 46% for Search, 40% for Network, and 64% for YouTube ads in the second quarter.

JMP Securities, MoffettNathanson, Deutsche Bank, Truist, Raymond James, JPMorgan, KeyBanc, Susquehanna, Cowen, Canaccord, Wells Fargo, Monness Crespi, Credit Suisse, BMO Capital, and Wedbush also raised their price targets on the name.

POSITIVE READ FOR FACEBOOK, AMAZON: Keeping an Overweight rating on the shares, Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak raised the firm's price target on Alphabet to $2,575 from $2,350. Search revenue growth accelerated to 30% year-over-year in the first quarter, which was 8% better than expected, the analyst noted. Nowak thinks this speaks to the company's "still-strong position at the top of the e-commerce funnel" as well as the broader strength of e-commerce and the structural shift of consumer time and dollars online. He sees Google's Search results having a positive read-through for Facebook (FB) and Amazon advertising (AMZN) as well as a positive read-across to other e-commerce players.

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