Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Alibaba Group (BABA) to Buy

Alibaba Group (NYSE:BABA) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Wednesday. The firm presently has a $199.00 target price on the specialty retailer’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target would indicate a potential upside of 15.32% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Alibaba's stock has outperformed the industry it belongs to on a 12-month basis. The company's Ele.me acquisition will increase its presence in the food delivery market. Further, the recent investment in Lazada will expand its presence in Asia. The company's solid growth in the company’s core e-commerce business, strong growth in metrics, New Retail strategy, expanding cloud business and international strength help it to generate significant revenues. Other drivers include strong mobile strength and its continued efforts to develop new products. However, macro headwinds, continued investments and increasing competition from Tencent Holdings and Baidu remain the overhangs.”

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Several other analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “buy” rating and issued a $230.00 price target (up previously from $210.00) on shares of Alibaba Group in a research note on Sunday, January 28th. Morgan Stanley set a $250.00 price target on Alibaba Group and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, January 29th. Nomura restated a “buy” rating and issued a $219.00 price target (down previously from $221.00) on shares of Alibaba Group in a research note on Tuesday, January 9th. MKM Partners restated a “buy” rating on shares of Alibaba Group in a research note on Friday, December 15th. Finally, Vetr downgraded Alibaba Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $213.25 price target on the stock. in a research note on Tuesday, January 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirty-one have assigned a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Alibaba Group presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $213.61.

Shares of BABA stock traded up $0.50 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $172.57. 18,144,622 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 20,489,861. Alibaba Group has a 1 year low of $106.76 and a 1 year high of $206.20. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.29, a quick ratio of 1.97 and a current ratio of 1.97. The company has a market capitalization of $440,697.78, a price-to-earnings ratio of 68.75, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.00 and a beta of 2.52.

Alibaba Group (NYSE:BABA) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The specialty retailer reported $1.34 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.42 by ($0.08). Alibaba Group had a return on equity of 17.61% and a net margin of 29.57%. The firm had revenue of $12.76 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $12.36 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.30 EPS. sell-side analysts forecast that Alibaba Group will post 4.08 earnings per share for the current year.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Osborn Williams & Donohoe LLC increased its stake in shares of Alibaba Group by 5.3% in the 4th quarter. Osborn Williams & Donohoe LLC now owns 5,520 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $952,000 after purchasing an additional 280 shares in the last quarter. North Star Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Alibaba Group by 1.3% in the 4th quarter. North Star Asset Management Inc. now owns 22,393 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $3,861,000 after purchasing an additional 284 shares in the last quarter. Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services Ltd. increased its stake in shares of Alibaba Group by 7.6% in the 4th quarter. Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services Ltd. now owns 4,086 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $705,000 after purchasing an additional 290 shares in the last quarter. AE Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in Alibaba Group by 13.9% in the 4th quarter. AE Wealth Management LLC now owns 2,467 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $425,000 after buying an additional 301 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vicus Capital increased its stake in Alibaba Group by 16.5% in the 4th quarter. Vicus Capital now owns 2,205 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $380,000 after buying an additional 313 shares in the last quarter. 37.73% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Alibaba Group

Alibaba Group Holding Limited, through its subsidiaries, operates as an online and mobile commerce company in the People's Republic of China and internationally. The company operates in four segments: Core Commerce, Cloud Computing, Digital Media and Entertainment, and Innovation Initiatives and Others.

Analyst Recommendations for Alibaba Group (NYSE:BABA)

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