Social media company Snap Inc. (SNAP) - Get Report was up 13% in trading Thursday after longtime BTIG bear Richard Greenfield upgraded the stock to buy from neutral due to expectations of rising advertising revenue.
This is the first time Greenfield has had a buy rating on the stock since it went public in March 2017. BTIG now has a $15 price target on the company, representing a 50% upside from the stock's closing price Wednesday of $10.05.
"We are increasingly confident that overseas direct response/performance advertisers are taking advantage of low relative bid prices on ad inventory in the US," Greenfield wrote. He also lauded the company's new management team and improvements to the video sharing site's algorithm.
Snap and Twitter (TWTR) - Get Report may have seen some traffic benefits Wednesday after market leader Facebook (FB) - Get Report and its Instagram subsidiary experienced prolonged, worldwide outages.
Outage maps on DownDetector.com showed difficulties for both Facebook and Instagram being reported in the U.S., Mexico, South America and Europe. According to DownDetector, outages on Facebook were first reported starting at 11:56 a.m. ET, while those for Instagram began at 12:01 p.m. ET. WhatsApp, which is also owned by Facebook, also appeared to be having issues, although more so in South America and Europe than in the U.S.
Greenfield has been slowly softening his coverage on the company over the past few months. In December, BTIG published a note increasing the company's rating to neutral from sell.
Greenfield said in the note that he no longer sees Snap as a compelling short target ahead of the company's app relaunch on Android devices.
Facebook is a holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS charitable trust. Read more about it here.
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