Wall Street analysts weigh in with some bearish thoughts on tech giant Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and online payment leader PayPal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:PYPL). While one analyst sees cracks appearing in Intel’s server dominance, the other outlines the potential impact of Apple Pay merchant acceptance on PayPal. Let’s take a closer look.
Intel now maintains a dominant position in the server chip market, however, Stacy Rasgon, Wall Street analyst at Bernstein, believes that the company is starting to face “cracks” in its perceived dominion.
Despite promoting an optimistic view of Intel’s dominance in his previous research on the tech giant, the analyst now believes that there are a variety of factors that will contribute to fractures in the company’s authoritative stance in the market. Rasgon believes that a move to cloud computing will be consuming enterprise IT server sales. He continues that the company will be safe until 2020, at which point Intel’s dominance will start to deteriorate as other competitors with more seamless substitutes to Intel’s products will start to see an increase in market share.
Rasgon offers that the long-term sentiment on the company is dependent on the long-run sustainability of the Data Center Group, as Intel’s business unit has begun to represent a greater share of its total revenues. On top of this, Rasgon argues, Intel has constructed much of its business around actually supporting the Data Center Group, stating, “in fact Intel is now marketing everything else they are doing as either directly or indirectly benefiting their datacenter efforts.”
Rasgon continues to explain that, over the last few years, Intel has hit its 15% growth target just once and points his finger at Enterprise being the most disappointing factor. Despite the company continually missing its growth targets, the analyst concedes that hyperscale growth has remained healthy for the company and postulates whether the two patterns are linked to each other in some way.
Lastly, the analyst points to encroaching real competition from players such as ARM as a threat to Intel’s dominance. The analyst notes, “ARM still has a good way to go, but the trend does appear to be in the correct direction [and] at a minimum we feel comfortable stating that the gap to x86 appears to be narrowing rather than widening.”
The analyst maintains a bearish outlook on the stock, reiterating an Underperform rating with a price target of $26, marking a 19% downside from current levels.
According to TipRanks, Stacy Rasgon has a 51% success rate recommending stocks with an average annual return of 3.2% per rating.
TipRanks statistics show 71% of analysts issuing a Buy rating for INTC, 19% maintaining a Hold rating, and 10% of analysts upholding a Sell rating for the stock. The average price target for INTC is $36.00, a 12% upside.
PayPal Holdings Inc.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster assesses how PayPal will be impacted by competitor Apple Pay’s inclusion on desktop and mobile Safari browser in fall 2016. The analyst remains bearish on the company, noting healthy merchant appetite for Apple Pay and potential changes in third party verification, or TPV, consumer behavior as the most concerning culprits contributing to his rating.
The analyst notes that Apple Pay’s progress with top 100 retailers points to an enthusiastic sentiment towards Apple’s service. Munster explains that 21 out of the top 100 retailers have announced that they will integrate with Apple Pay’s in-browser launch, also noting that “an additional 10 will be ready at or slightly after launch.” To provide background, PayPal is currently accepted at 54 of the 100 top retailers. At launch, the analyst expects the crossover between the two payment methods to be between 28%-43%.
Munster highlights another threat to PayPal, explaining that Apple Pay’s in-browser service is expected to be relatively simple and easy to use. Munster explains, “we do not believe retailers will shy away from Apple Pay because of a ‘cluttering problem,’ as placing a well-trusted brand alongside existing checkout points will likely improve conversion.”
So how will consumer behavior change with the addition of Apple Pay as a checkout payment method? Munster hypothesizes that, when faced with the option to use Apple Pay at checkout, consumers will probably choose to use Apple Pay over PayPal. He speculates that PayPal’s user base has used PayPal’s service simply because it has been the only widely accepted option available to simplify online checkout. As consumers seek to further streamline their lives, consolidation of information and actions to Apple devices and Apple platforms comes as a very attractive simplification tool.
Munster reiterates an Underweight rating on PYPL with a price target of $34.00.
According to TipRanks, Gene Munster sustains a 59% success rate with an average return of 16.2%. He is ranked in the top 1% of all analysts on Wall Street.
TipRanks statistics show that 54% of analysts maintain a Buy rating for PYPL, while 42% advocate a Hold rating, and 4% uphold a Sell rating for the stock. The average price target of $43.21 for PYPL, a 17% upside.