Cantor Positive on Yelp Inc (YELP) Ahead of This Evening’s 2Q Results

Customer review giant Yelp Inc (NYSE:YELP) is set to deliver second-quarter results today after market-close. Even though the company has notoriously underperformed in recent history, for Cantor analyst Youssef Squali, this quarter is expected to prove YELP should still be among the highest in his coverage universe, even with decelerated local ad revenue growth as a driving factor.

On the back of high hopes thanks to revamped management and sharper direction, Squali reiterates a Buy rating on shares of YELP with a $38 price target, marking a nearly 18% increase from where the stock is currently trading.

Squali projects second-quarter revenue of $171.0 million and EBITDA estimate of $22.7 million, which aligns with the Street’s expectations of $169.8 million in revenue and $23.3 million in earnings. Guidance forecasts a range of $167 to $171 million in revenue and of $21 to $25 million in earnings. For third-quarter estimates, the Street anticipates revenue of $179.5 million and earnings of $28.1 million, with $698.9 million in revenue and $99.3 million in earnings expected for the fiscal year of 2016.

Squali added, “YELP has been a material underperformer over the last couple of years, due in part to execution mishaps, which have caused slowing Y/Y growth, and in part to rising competition. That said, a revamped mgt. team and salesforce seem to be improving the execution, while the local online ad opportunity remains substantial and the number of players with scale, brand and network effect remains limited, positioning Yelp well over time.”

According to TipRanks, top five-star analyst Youssef Squali is ranked #4 out of 4,105 analysts. Squali has reached a high success rate of 71% and realizes 15% in his average returns. When recommending YELP, Squali earns 10.6% in profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics shows YELP as a Buy. Based on 16 analysts who have offered recommendations for the stock in the last 3 months, 8 rate a Buy, 5 maintain a Hold, and 3 issue a Sell. The consensus price target is $29.67, marking a nearly 7% downside from where the shares last closed.

Recommended Article: Piper Jaffray Analyst Reiterates Neutral Rating for Yelp

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