Will LinkedIn (LNKD) Stock Respond Today to This Analyst Action?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- BMO Capital Markets raised its price target on LinkedIn Corp. (LNKD) to $260 from $250 on a higher target multiple based upon "greater clarity on the Sales Navigator's ramp," analysts said.

Last week BMO Capital hosted LinkedIn management for meetings in London which featured demos of Sales Navigator, a "social selling" tool that leverages LinkedIn's network to generate sales leads, analysts said.

The online professional network addressed investor concerns about the new tool by "ensuring the user experience is not denigrated by over-solicitous behavior, continuing strong partnerships with salesforce.com (CRM) and Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) , and reiterating that Sales Navigator's top-end price point ($100/month) falls within the typical $25-$100/month range of software products offered to sales-people," analysts added.

Shares of LinkedIn are down 1.38% to $223.14.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates LINKEDIN CORP as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate LINKEDIN CORP (LNKD) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed--some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 28.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 44.6%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displaying stagnant earnings per share.
  • LNKD has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 3.44, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • The gross profit margin for LINKEDIN CORP is currently very high, coming in at 86.82%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -0.75% is in-line with the industry average.
  • 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 Internet Software & Services industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 26.8% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$3.36 million to -$4.26 million.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Internet Software & Services industry and the overall market, LINKEDIN CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: LNKD Ratings Report

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