Facebook Inc (FB) Earnings Preview: Price Target Upped

Facebook is scheduled to release its next earnings report tomorrow after closing bell, and analysts remain confident going into the print. But has the bar been set too high? As with all stocks that are as popular as Facebook, this is a concern with tomorrow’s earnings report.

What to expect in Facebook’s earnings report

On average, analysts are expecting adjusted earnings of 47 cents per share on revenue of $3.99 billion for the second quarter. Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Youssef Squali and his team maintained their Buy rating and $100 per share price target going into tomorrow’s report, but they’re actually expecting Facebook to miss estimates for adjusted earnings but beat on revenue. They’re looking for earnings of 43 cents per share and revenue of $4 billion.

They expect to be impressed again with the social network’s ad revenue growth, projecting a 41.1% growth rate, which would bring it to $3.8 billion. It would also mean that Facebook is growing its ad revenue at a pace that’s almost three times faster than that of the overall ad market. The social network is expected to post sector-leading growth rates.

The Cantor Fitzgerald team is expecting a 12.6% increase in monthly active users, bringing the number to about $1.48 billion, and 0.648 daily/ monthly active user engagement. That would be consistent with past quarters. They want to see mobile ad revenue make up about 75% of Facebook’s total revenues, which would bring it to about $2.85 billion. They’re not expecting much of an accretive impact from video ads just yet.

Raymond James ups Facebook’s price target

Raymond James analyst Aaron Kessler and his team raised their price target on Facebook to $110 per share and maintained their Outperform rating on the social network’s stock. The reason for the higher price target is because they think the company deserves a higher multiple. They’re projecting a slight miss for revenue at $3.97 billion but a beat on adjusted earnings, which they estimate at 49 cents per share.

For ad revenues, they’re expecting a 40% increase to $3.74 billion. They want to see total ad revenue of $3.74 billion mobile ad revenue climb 67% from last year to about $2.77 billion, and they want to see 968 million daily active users. The Raymond James team is estimating $2.46 billion in adjusted EBITDA.

They noted that recent data from Nanigans suggested a 142% increase in CPM and a 187% increase in click-through rate. Data from Kinetic suggested a 25% sequential increase in social ad spend with Facebook accounting for about 75% of that. Data from Ampush suggested a 26% increase in mobile ad spend quarter over quarter, while Kenshoo data suggested a 114% increase in global paid social ad spend. Also comScore reported a 27% increase year over year in total minutes spent on Facebook.

On the company’s earnings call, they will be looking for signs of traction in video ads and success of new ad formats. They also want to hear updates on Instagram monetization and expense guidance. It should be noted that in the last couple of quarters, Facebook cut its expense guidance for the current fiscal year.

Shares of Facebook fell as much as 0.31% to $93.88 per share during regular trading hours today.

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About the Author

Michelle Jones
Michelle Jones was a television news producer for eight years. She produced the morning news programs for the NBC affiliates in Evansville, Indiana and Huntsville, Alabama and spent a short time at the CBS affiliate in Huntsville. She has experience as a writer and public relations expert for a wide variety of businesses. Michelle has been with ValueWalk since 2012 and is now our editor-in-chief. Email her at [email protected]

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