With the first-quarter earnings reporting more than half over, the numbers for the most part are continuing to come in reasonably solid. Many of the top firms on Wall Street that we cover are making some target price adjustments based on the reports, while others are upping their expectations for some companies in front of their earnings print.
In a series of recent research reports, JPMorgan has highlighted earnings results and also has stocks the firm is bullish on in front of numbers. We found three of its Analysts Focus List favorites, all rated Overweight, that have posted first-quarter results.
The technology giant remains a top technology pick across Wall Street. Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL), through its subsidiaries, builds technology products and provides services to organize the information. The company offers Google Search that provides information online; Google Now that offers information to users when they need it; AdWords, an auction-based advertising program; AdSense, which enables websites that are part of the Google network to deliver ads; DoubleClick Ad Exchange, a marketplace for the trading display ad space; and other advertising platforms, such as AdExchange and AdMob.
It also provides YouTube, which offers video, interactive and other ad formats; Android, an open source mobile software platform; hardware products, including Chromebook, Chrome OS devices, Chromecast and Nexus devices; Google Play, a cloud-based digital entertainment store for apps, music, books and movies; Google Drive, a place for users to create, share, collaborate and keep their stuff; and Google Wallet, a virtual wallet for in-store contactless payments.
Many Wall Street analysts have lauded the numerous upcoming catalysts and point out that the company showed consistent revenue growth, margin stabilization and finally gave cash back in the form of a $5.1 billion stock buyback last year. Last, but certainly not least, the company remains one of the best overall portfolio plays that focuses on the biggest Internet trends: The mobile/multiscreen shift, wearable devices, video, the Internet of Things and much more. Alphabet delivers investors the full package.
The company reported results for the quarter that were below expectations, but overall the JPMorgan team called it a “good quarter.” Despite missing expectations, the results overall were still very good, with +23% currency and hedging neutral (FXHN) revenue, and non-GAAP operating income growing 21% year over year on 1% margin expansion.
The JPMorgan price target was lowered to $925, and the Thomson/First Call consensus price target is $911.07. Shares closed Friday at $737.77, down 5.4% on the day.
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