Walt Disney (DIS) shares were higher after Credit Suisse analysts upgraded the entertainment giant to outperform from neutral and boosted their target price 15%, citing several potential upside catalysts to the stock.
Analyst Douglas Mitchelson and a team in a report Thursday said they're now expecting the stock to reach $150 in the next year, compared with $130 previously. This even as the stock has outperformed the S&P 500 by 8% in 2019 to date.
The stock traded up 2.3% at $137.89, about 10% potential upside.
Here are the catalysts, in order, that Credit Suisse analysts expect to happen:
-- The opening of the "Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge" park at Walt Disney World at the end of August and the opening of the "Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance" attraction in December;
-- The Disney+ streaming-media effort begins advertising in late August and launches in November. In between, the firm expects Disney to reach a number of marketing and distribution partnerships;
-- A "strong film slate" in fiscal 2020, including "Star Wars 9" and "Frozen 2"; and,
-- An expected rebound in Fox results in fiscal 2020.
Risks? Surely. International streaming may "prove more difficult and expensive than investors expect, particularly for Hulu International," the analysts said.
And secular media trends present "headwinds for Disney's traditional U.S. media-networks businesses, which remain one of the largest contributors to profitability," they said.
In particular, if cord cutting -- consumers dropping multichannel cable-TV and switching to streaming -- increases, that could hurt Disney's affiliate revenue and program viewership.