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Wendy's Cut to Hold by Stifel on Valuation After Surge

The 26% jump in Wendy's stock on Tuesday, part of a general gain for meme stocks, put it at a level that reflects Stifel's $25 price target.
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Wendy’s  (WEN)  was downgraded at Stifel to hold from buy based on valuation. Stifel kept its price target at $25 on the Dublin, Ohio, restaurant chain.

The stock’s 26% jump Tuesday, part of a general gain for meme stocks, put the stock’s valuation at a level that already reflects Stifel analyst Chris O’Cull’s target price, he said.

At a recent Stifel-sponsored conference, the analyst said, "management struck a confident tone regarding the company's ability to hit its financial targets for 2021 and beyond.

"[To] be clear, nothing we heard during the [conference] caused us any concern about the company's outlook."

O’Cull said he remained “constructive toward the company’s fundamental outlook.”

Wendy’s shares recently stood at $28.47, off 1.4%. They have gained 32% in the past six months, mostly reflecting Tuesday’s move.

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TheStreet Recommends Founder Jim Cramer likes Wendy’s but warned on Tuesday that the rally will be “short-lived."

“$WEN--still inexpensive on 2023 earnings --i know that's crazy but it is true,” he tweeted.

He also struck a bullish tone on Twitter prior to the market opening Tuesday. “Wendy's ($WEN) a huge favorite of @MadMoneyOnCNBC gets nice push from Reddit. I think it deserves to be higher.”

The rise in Wendy's stock, seemingly driven by no specific news, matches the activity seen in other stocks that have captured the imaginations and pocketbooks of retail traders.

These investors are encouraging one another on message boards like Reddit to jump into the stock-trading game on expectations of quick profits.

Last month, Wendy's posted first-quarter earnings and sales that beat analysts' forecasts. And the fast-food chain raised its outlook for the year amid expectations of a post-pandemic rebound in demand.

Wendy's reported adjusted earnings of 20 cents a share, beating the FactSet analyst estimate of 14 cents.