In the wake of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s earnings report this week, analysts from multiple firms have increased their price targets and estimates. Two of the firms that raised their numbers are FBN and Baird. As always, mobile advertising and engagement rates are hot topics of conversation around the second quarter earnings results.
FBN bumps up Facebook price target by $10
In a report dated July 24, 2014, analyst Shebly Seyrafi of FBN Securities said they increased their price target from $85 to $95 per share and reiterated their Outperform rating. The analyst notes Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s big-time earnings per share and revenue beats. The social network’s advertising revenue growth increased 67% year over year even though it had a difficult comparison compared to last year’s second quarter, which was when the company was ramping up its more expensive News Feed ads.
FBN states that bears who don’t like Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) because they think engagement rates are falling may be out of luck. The social network’s overall numbers of daily active users and monthly active users rose to $63% from the previous quarter’s 62.9% increase. Mobile engagement also increased, rising to 61.1% compared to 60.4% in the previous quarter.
Seyrafi also notes that Facebook is focusing more of its efforts on Messenger. The social network hit 200 million monthly active users in April, and it brought in the former head of eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY)’s PayPal to be the chief of its Messenger unit.
Baird raises Facebook price target by $11
In another report also dated July 24, 2014, Baird analysts Colin Sebastian and Benjamin C. Gaither increased their price target for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) from $71 to $82 per share and reiterated their Outperform rating. Their report focused more on strong trends in mobile monetization and also cost controls heading into tougher comparisons for the second half of the year.
The Baird team calls Facebook “an emerging advertising powerhouse,” citing several levers for potential growth going forward, including its ad network, video ads, direct response ads and others. The analysts said Facebook is still one of their top picks among large-cap Internet stocks.
The analysts said Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s profit margins led the beat in the company’s earnings beat. Revenues were $2.91 billion, while earnings per share were 42 cents. Consensus estimates were $2.8 billion in revenue and earnings of 32 cents per share. They note that the social network’s ad revenue growth did decelerate but say that it remains “impressive.” Their checks suggest that Facebook saw “significant” contributions from App Install Ads that boosted its second quarter results. They expect further incremental growth from premium video ads, Instagram, the mobile ad network and global monetization.