All Eyes on Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) and NXP Semiconductors NV (NXPI) Earnings This Evening

All eyes eagerly look to this evening’s big earnings party as electric car giant Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) and chip maker NXP Semiconductors NV (NASDAQ:NXPI) are delivering third-quarter reports after market close. Oppenheimer weighs in sidelined on TSLA while offering perspective into an updated model for the company’s restated financials, but decidedly more bullish on NXP Semiconductors amid the rumble of merger and acquisition chatter. Let’s delve in deeper:

Tesla Motors Inc

Tesla’s quarterly print is soon on its way, and investors anxiously wait to take a closer look at the company’s forthcoming conversion to reporting GAAP revenue. Ahead of the print, Oppenheimer analyst Colin Rusch reiterates a Perform rating on shares of TSLA without listing a price target.

The analyst has tweaked his model to no longer include deferred revenue from lease accounting. For the third quarter, the analyst has lowered revenue from $2,327.4 million to $1,866.3 million. Adjusted gross margin will be reported based on GAAP revenue and gross profit will be altered for stock-based compensation after the reporting change. The analyst has reduced his gross margin estimate from 23.0% to 22.2%.

Rusch notes, “Given the potential confusion around TSLA’s anticipated reporting changes, we are publishing an updated model to help investors navigate these adjustments. The critical change in proforma revenue is the recognition of lease revenue not total vehicle value. Due to high percentage of deferred revenue (~35%), this change also materially changes EPS. We expect cash flow estimates to remain intact.”

“We also believe the new reporting structure highlights the importance of TSLA’s lease partners and risks around TSLA’s used vehicle market whether it is older vehicles cannibalizing new sales or the brisk pace of innovation limiting interest in older vehicles. While used Tesla’s have held value well to date, we view the end of lease vehicle strategy as a critical variable for future cash needs,” Rusch concludes.

As usual, we like to include the analyst’s track record when reporting on new analyst notes to give a perspective on the effect it has on stock performance. According to TipRanks, four-star analyst Colin Rusch is ranked #440 out of 4,197 analysts. Rusch has a 47% success rate and gains 8.2% in his annual returns. When recommending TSLA, Rusch garners 88.9% in average profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics exhibit TSLA as a Hold. Based on 11 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 2 rate a Buy on TSLA, 5 maintain a Hold, while 4 issue a Sell. The 12-month price target stands at $214.56, marking a 6% upside from where the shares last closed.

NXP Semiconductors NV

Ahead of NXP Semiconductors’ third-quarter financial report, Oppenheimer analyst Rick Schafer remains bullish on what he deems “the leading semiconductor to the automotive market, our favorite multi-year vertical.” Therefore, the analyst reiterates an Outperform rating on NXP while raising the price target from $100 to $110, which represents a 10% increase from current levels.

For the third quarter, the analyst projects EPS of $1.59. For the fourth quarter, the analyst forecasts EPS guidance of $2.02. Schafer likes the “multiple levers” the company has as leverage drivers for free cash flow (FCF) and EPS. Meanwhile, the company has guided OM of 27.5%. For the second half of 2017, the analyst expects OM to hit over 30% and for FCF to reach $2.2 billion in 2017. The company anticipates to close 2016 with over $300 million in annualized OpEx improvement, compared to its initial synergy target of $200 million.

Schafer opines, “We expect NT fundamentals to take a back seat to mgmt commentary surrounding recent reports (beginning with on 9/29) that QCOM is in talks to acquire NXPI for ~$110/share. We also see NXPI as an accretive use of QCOM’s nearly $30B offshore cash horde that can allow the company to diversify away from handsets. NXPI represents a relatively inexpensive non-US asset (at ~13x CY17E). We think a QCOM/NXPI deal is more likely than not. Near term shares likely react more to M&A speculation than fundamentals.”

Additionally, the analyst likes NXPI’s odds for a deal with QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM). “While reports haven’t been confirmed or denied by either company, we believe a QCOM/NXPI acquisition makes strategic sense. QCOM needs to diversify its ~100% mobile exposure and holds ~90% of its $31B cash stockpile offshore, making NXPI (a Dutch company) a logical target,” Schafer concludes.

Long-term, the analyst expects growth of both EPS as well as FCF to be “significant.”

Rick Schafer has a very good TipRanks score with a 72% success rate and he ranks at #13 out of 4,197 analysts. Schafer has a five-star rating and realizes 15.9% in his yearly returns. When suggesting NXP, Schafer yields 11.1% in average profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics exhibit NXP as a Strong Buy. The consensus price target stands at $111.50, marking a nearly 12% increase from where the stock is currently trading.

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