With a record Prime Day in the books, Amazon (AMZN) is "the best set-up" among the FANG stocks and other big-name Internet companies for the second half of the year, Cowen analyst John Blackledge suggested in a Friday report. Facebook (FB) has strong prospects based on its growth in users and advertisers, the analyst wrote, while Netflix (NFLX) can also expect a solid quarter, but Alphabet's (GOOGL) regulatory woes overseas may taint strong results.
Even after gaining more than 33% this year, Amazon is Blackledge's top pick for 2017.
"At the center of our bullish thesis is our belief that [Amazon] will continue to gain share in large, historically 'non-core' retail markets," Blackledge wrote, citing food and beverages, consumer packaged goods and apparel. Keep in mind that Amazon's food and consumables businesses does not yet reflect the recent $13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods market Inc. (WFM) .
When Amazon reports on July 27, the analyst expects sales to grow 24% to $37.7 billion.
Amazon Prime will ultimately drive Amazon's gross merchandise volume from $252 billion this year to $652 billion by 2022, Cowen projects. Other bright spots include the Amazon Web Services cloud business and the company's growing advertising business. While the prestige value of Amazon's original content studios is not part of Blackledge's thesis, the company racked up 16 Emmy nominations for "Transparent," "Catastrophe" and other original shows on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Facebook continues to attract ad dollars, with the flagship social network notching five million advertisers and Instagram adding another one million. Cowen expects Facebook to post a 45% jump in second quarter revenue to $9.3 billion with mobile ad revenue gaining 52% to $8 billion, when the social network reports on July 26.
Meanwhile, Google's troubles overseas may overshadow the company's success. The size of the European Union's $2.7 billion anti-trust penalty is not so alarming, given that parent Alphabet had $92.4 billion in cash at the end of the fourth quarter, with $55.7 billion overseas. However, Blackledge suggested that investors are concerned about the revenue hit from changes that Google will have to make to the business, and future rulings that could affect the Android mobile business.
"Beyond the regulatory overhang, [Google's] core business seems to be firing on all cylinders," the analyst wrote. Cowen expects a 19% increase in second-quarter sales to $25.6 billion when Alphabet reports on July 24.
For its part, Netflix should benefit from new episodes of the House of Cards series and about 300 hours of new original content in the second quarter, Blackledge writes. The analyst expects a 32% gain in sales to $2.79 billion when Netflix reports Monday, with 603,000 new streaming subscribers in the U.S. and a gain of 2.6 million subscribers overseas.
The streaming video pioneer did even better than Amazon in this year's Emmy's nominations, receiving 91 nominations Thursday for "The Crown," "House of Cards" and "Stranger Things," among other shows.
Amazon's shares rose 0.1% to $1,002.17 early Friday afternoon.