Himax Issues Strongly Worded Rebuke To Analyst After Downgrade

Himax Technologies (HIMX) responded to a downgrade of its stock by an analyst at Oppenheimer with a strongly worded reply, in which the company said it has not communicated with the analyst in months and questioned the timing of the report.

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OPPENHEIMER DOWNGRADES: Oppenheimer analyst Andrew Uerkwitz downgraded Himax to Underperform, the firm's lowest rating, with a $4 price target, saying decreased smartphone expectations in China for 2017 will weigh on the company's near-term orders. He added while he expects many new phones to be released in the second half of this year, there will be a shift to 18:9 displays, an area in which he feels Himax lags behind its competitors, and he remains hesitant on the company's Touch and Display Driver Integration, or TDDI, opportunities. Uerkwitz also said forecasts have estimated growing OLED panel shipments but Himax is unlikely to win OLED driver IC business from Samsung (SSNLF) in the near-term. The analyst believes a "smooth" turnaround for Himax's DDIC business is unlikely and notes his estimates for the company have been the lowest on Wall Street for some time.

HIMAX RESPONDS: In a statement provided to The Fly, Himax said, "The management have not spoken to the analyst Andrew Uerkwitz from Oppenheimer for three months. Thus, we believe his report recently issued on July 14 is INACCURATE and MISLEADING. This report does not represent the fact of our company at all. Our business is not only on track but also rebounded strongly reflecting market share gain. We will report positively on the 2Q17 earnings call...We question Andrew Uerwitz's intention to set up a low Target Price without facts, especially when Himax just declared dividend where investors only have one week to buy to get dividend. He chose this time to publish a negative report with a ridiculous Target Price without talking to Himax management on the day we announce our EC date is also suspicious."

PRICE ACTION: Himax, which spent the early part of the session in negative territory, is up 0.6% to $8.06 in afternoon trading.


Disclosure: None. 


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