Snap stock surged again on Tuesday, marking the second consecutive day the Snapchat parent company’s shares rallied early only to drop as the day wore on. The company received its very first Buy rating on Monday from analysts at Monness Crespi Hardt, who initiated coverage of Snap stock with a $25 price target.
All other analysts covering the stock have a Hold or Sell rating on it.
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The first Buy rating on Snap stock
In a research note on Monday, Moness Crespi Hardt analyst James Cakmak said he realized that he might be giving Snap management too much credit for “unproven skills in building a business, rather than just a product.” However, he added that he sees more to the company than what others currently see. He feels that Snap could outperform its peers’ revenue growth rates.
Cakmak is in the minority here, as according to CNBC, six analysts have a Sell rating on Snap stock while three rate it at Hold. The stock started off with a bang on IPO day, closing in on $30 a share in the first couple days of trading before it tanked. It did manage to secure one upgrade since the IPO, however.
Is Snap a social network or camera company?
Most of Wall Street is concerned by Snapchat’s slowing user growth, growing losses and the lack of voting rights attached to the shares that are currently being bought and sold on the New York Stock Exchange. User growth in particular is fresh on analysts’ minds as Twitter has struggled since early in its life as a public company because of a lack of user growth.
Cakmak, however, isn’t concerned about slowing daily usage on Snapchat because instead of seeing its parent company Snap as a social network, he buys into management’s vision that the company is in the business of cameras and not social networking. He notes that other than the invention of the digital camera in 1975, there hasn’t been much innovation in cameras other than improving pixel quality. He feels that future innovations in the camera business will come more through software rather than hardware.
Snap stock will get more Buy ratings… probably
So far, none of the really large investment banks have weighed in on Snap stock, and that’s because they were underwriters for the initial public offering. Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs were the lead underwriters for the offering and distributed over half of the shares, reports The Motley Fool. The list of underwriters for the Snap stock IPO was actually quite long, as 26 firms in total took part. None of the firms that served as underwriters for the IPO are allowed to issue reports on Snap until 25 days after the offering, for obvious reasons.
Not all of the underwriters will initiate coverage of Snap stock immediately, but given that this is one of the hottest tech IPOs in a while, other than MuleSoft, it seems likely that a lot of these firms will at some point over the next few months. It also seems likely that some of the underwriters will strike a bullish tone on Snap, but most probably won’t rate the stock as a Sell, despite that so-called “Chinese wall” that’s supposed to separate firms’ research and investment banking divisions. Snap stock was priced at $17 per share in the IPO, so that may well be the line in the sand, as far as most underwriters are concerned.