Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) investors have been wary of the rise of the Pokemon Go app since it first launched in July. The question is whether the new user experience detracts from time spent on other mobile-oriented apps, including Mark Zuckerberg’s social media giant.
Axiom top analyst Victor Anthony sees these concerns and answers with reassurance on the matter. Though Pokemon Go stole headlines last month for outclassing Facebook in user engagement minutes, as of last week, SurveyMonkey now reveals a 20% decline of its U.S. user base. Moreover, app tracking firm Apptopia shows daily users are down 35% from the peak, daily downloads are down over 70% from the peak, and engagement has fallen to a range of 40% to 50% from its once towering heights of 80%. Google Trends data aligns with this trend of declining interest in the fad whose 15 minutes of fame Anthony believes are about to be over.
In light of this marked downfall of the giant’s popular competition, Anthony reiterates a Buy rating on shares of FB with a price target of $160, which represents just under a 29% increase from where the stock is currently trading.
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Anthony concludes, “The declining trends should assuage investor concerns about the impact of Pokémon Go on time spent on the above named companies. Further, while Pokémon Go is not 100% augmented reality (AR), the rapid rise and subsequent sharp decline in daily usage, if that decline is sustained, could call into question whether AR can gain lasting traction with users. The Google Trends data is already showing declining interest in AR, whereas interest in virtual reality remains high. It remains to be seen how AR develops; however, we are excited by what we see from startup Magic Leap.”
According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, top five-star analyst Victor Anthony has achieved a high ranking of #62 out of 4,122 analysts. Anthony upholds a 66% success rate and realizes 12.9% in his average returns. When recommending FB, Anthony yields 47.7% in average profits on the stock.
TipRanks analytics demonstrate FB as a Strong Buy. Based on 35 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 30 rate a Buy on FB, while 5 maintain a Hold. The 12-month average price target stands at $155.29, marking a 26% upside from where the shares last closed.