Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook blew past Wall Street’s expectations in its second-quarter earnings.

Wall Street has subsequently heaped commendation on the company. Its stock, one of the hot tech names that have driven the market’s gains this year, is set to open at an all-time high on Thursday. 

In the second quarter, Facebook’s user base, the largest in the world, grew by 17% year-over-year, with 66% of its 2.01 billion users visiting the social network every day. Its revenues increased 45% from the same quarter a year ago to $9.32 billion, while its earnings per share was $1.32, beating the forecast for $1.13.

Here’s a wrap of some of the analyst commentary: 

RBC Capital Markets: BULLISH

Rating: Outperform

Price target: $195 ($185 previously)

Comment: “FB might well be the best growth story in tech,” said Mark Mahaney.

“Yes, we are incrementally more positive. Core FB is growing extremely well, with almost unprecedented ad revenue growth consistency. More important, we believe that FB’s current low market shares — approximately 15% of global online advertising and 5% of global total advertising — will help it to maintain premium growth for a long time.”

Goldman: BULLISH

Rating: Buy

Price target: $205 (previously $180)

Comment: “We maintain our attractive outlook on Facebook, as the company continues to be well-positioned in one of the best secular markets,” said the analysts led by Heather Bellini.

“We expect consensus estimates to increase on the back of this quarter’s beat, though management once again pointed to decelerating revenue growth in 2H17 as Facebook ad load reaches saturation. However, we continue to see opportunities for incremental ad load on Instagram, increased engagement from Instagram stories, and (while early) potential for new monetization levers through Messenger and WhatsApp.”

Jefferies: BULLISH

Rating: Buy

Price target: $215 (previously $192)

Comment: “Facebook is the best positioned social platform today connecting 2B+ users worldwide to nearly every advertiser,” said the analysts led by Brian Fitzgerald.

“Video across both Facebook & Instagram are the areas to watch as digital video consumption continues to take share from nearly every other form of media consumption. We think there is upside to both ARPU & MAUs driven by increasing engagement across all platforms & the opportunity to grow its digital video advertising business (did we mention FB has yet to try to monetize its 2 other 1B+ messaging platforms?).”

See the rest of the story at INSIDER
Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/facebook-earnings-analysts-rating-stock-price-target-2017-7

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