Shares of Boeing Co. (BA) climbed 2.6% to $352.61 Thursday after Morgan Stanley analyst Rajeev Lalwani upgraded the aerospace company to "overweight" from "equal weight" and increased his price target to $450.
Lalwani said in a note that, barring a downturn, the resilience of earnings per share and free cash flow profile "should remain in place within Commercial Aerospace, which is supported by airline profits and air traffic holding steady following the decline in oil."
In addition, Lalwani said, "we see foresee compounding growth coming from buybacks, production hikes, and margin improvement (15-20%), all from a management that has proven to be best-in-class."
"Shares are down ~15% from highs, creating a favorable Bull-Bear skew alongside offering a FCF yield of ~10% on our 2020E," Lalwani wrote.
Lalwani said he expects Boeing to launch a new mid-sized airplane at the Paris Air Show in June, "with the key factor being the macro backdrop, since we believe recessionary signals would lead to a delay in the program."
Charles Minervino, an analyst at Susquehanna, also was bullish on Boeing, initiating coverage of the company with a positive rating and a $388 price target.
"We believe the commercial airplane market is still in an order upcycle, with customers needing to replace aging fleets while catering to growing travel demand," Minervino said in a note.
Additionally, the U.S. Air Force has accepted first delivery of Boeing's KC-46 tanker. The development of the aircraft has been delayed and Boeing recorded $176 million in additional charges on the KC-46 in the third quarter.