Merrill Lynch’s Take on Ford Motor Company (F) Following Investor Day

Merrill Lynch analyst John Murphy provides his perspective on Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) prospects, after the automaker’s hosted Investor Day today. Merrill Lynch analyst John Murphy reiterated a Neutral rating on F with a price target of $14, which represents a 15% increase from where the shares last closed.

Murphy notes, “The discussion was longer-term focused, highlighting Ford’s strategy to remain competitive in the evolving auto industry, while continuing to generate solid earnings and cash flow and enhance shareholder value.”

The analyst adds that “key discussion topics included Ford’s commitment to remaining at the forefront of technology and emerging industry trends, as well as the company’s long-term product strategy, and capital allocation framework, especially with respect to shareholder value. This message was encouraging, but was not necessarily new.”

While Murphy sees F’s 2017 estimates as “conservative,” the company’s 2018 outlooks is “fairly consistent” with the analyst’s projection for earnings power, where the analyst expects EPS to hit $2.10. Ultimately, Murphy recognizes “some speed bumps in the near-term” but as far as F’s long-term is concerned, the automaker is looking at an “open road.”

Still, the analyst remains sidelined based on F’s weak first-quarter earnings, where Murphy downgraded the company from a Buy to a Neutral, still expecting the stock to underperform GM’s.

According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, four-star analyst Murphy is ranked #616 out of 4,151 analysts. Murphy has a 64% success rate and yields 8.3% in his annual returns. When recommending F, Murphy earns 31.0% in average profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics demonstrate F as a Hold. Based on 11 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 4 rate a Buy on F, 5 maintain a Hold, while 2 issue a Sell. The consensus price target stands at $13.00, marking a 7% upside from where the stock is currently trading.


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