Update 2 (4:10 p.m. EST): Updated with closing price, day high and low prices, price change and volume information.
Updated from 1:09 p.m. EST to include comments from Citron Research report.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- BlackBerry (BBRY) rose 6.07% to $9.08, up 52 cents from its previous close of $8.56, at the close of the trading day on Friday after Citron Research set a target price of $15 for the stock.
The stock had a volume of 42,553,191, nearly double its average of 22,130,100. It hit a high of $9.13 and a low of $8.42 for the day.
Citron posted a report in which it states its position that short-sellers are too fixated on the company's decline in the smartphone market. Citron argues that CEO John Chen, who took over in November, has significantly lowered the risk of BlackBerry's balance sheet.
BlackBerry also announced Thursday the acquisition of $250 million in debentures by Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited. Fairfax, through its subsidiaries, had purchased an additional $250 million principal amount of 6% unsecured subordinated convertible debentures. According to the press release, "the additional debentures were purchased pursuant to the exercise of a previously-announced option that was granted in connection with BlackBerry's private placement of U.S. $1 billion principal amount of Debentures on November 13, 2013."
The news coincides with Blackberry's announcement on Thursday that it had reached a deal with German software company Datev, which agreed to buy 1,000 BlackBerry 10 smartphones. But Businessweek points out that the company sold nearly 7,000 phones per hour when it was at its peak.
TheStreet Ratings team rates BlackBerry as a "sell" with a ratings score of D. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate BLACKBERRY LTD (BBRY) a SELL. This is driven by multiple weaknesses, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- BLACKBERRY LTD has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, BLACKBERRY LTD swung to a loss, reporting -$1.20 versus $2.24 in the prior year.
- The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Communications Equipment industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 49000.0% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $9.00 million to -$4,401.00 million.
- Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Communications Equipment industry and the overall market, BLACKBERRY LTD's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
- Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$81.00 million or 108.45% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
- The share price of BLACKBERRY LTD has not done very well: it is down 24.11% and has underperformed the S&P 500, in part reflecting the company's sharply declining earnings per share when compared to the year-earlier quarter. The fact that the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings is not reason enough to justify a buy rating at this time.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: BBRY Ratings Report
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