Earnings Previews: BioNTech, Palantir, Workhorse

Nearly 500 companies are reporting quarterly earnings this week. The one in our watch list for Monday morning, Coty, beat estimates on both the top and bottom lines.

We already have previewed four reports due out after markets close Monday: PayPal, Roblox, SmileDirectClub and Virgin Galactic.

Here are previews of three reports due out before U.S. markets open on Tuesday.

BioNTech

Along with Pfizer, Germany-based BioNTech S.E. (NASDAQ: BNTX) developed one of the first COVID-19 vaccines. Since the vaccine was approved for emergency use in the spring, the stock price has risen by more than 350%. At its peak in early August, the stock was up 850%.

When Moderna reported results last Friday, the other messenger RNA vaccine maker said it would not be able to supply as many doses as previously expected. Pfizer raised its guidance for this year after reporting earnings last week and that, combined with Moderna’s stumble, should be good for BioNTech.

Of 15 analysts covering the stock, nine have given the shares a Hold rating, and four more rate the stock at Buy or Strong Buy. The share price drop that began in August has skewed expectations to the high side. At a recent price of around $227.50, the upside potential based on a median price target of $329 is nearly 45%. At the high target of $446.14, the upside potential is 96%.

Third-quarter revenue is expected to come in at $5.81 billion, which would be 8.6% higher sequentially and up from $67.46 million a year ago. Adjusted earnings per share (EPS) are forecast at $12.21, up 13.4% sequentially and compared to a loss of $0.88 per share a year ago. For the full year, analysts expect BioNTech to report EPS of $41.97, up from the year-ago total of $0.07 per share. Sales are forecast to rise by more than 3,250% to $19.82 billion.

BioNTech stock trades at 5.2 times expected 2021 EPS, as well as 5.1 times and 9.4 times estimated 2022 and 2023 EPS, respectively. The stock’s 52-week range is $80.55 to $464.00. BioNTech does not pay a dividend.

Palantir

Over the past 12 months, shares of Palantir Technologies Inc. (NYSE: PLTR) have added about 88% to their price. That includes a meme stock spike of about 180% in mid-February. Last week, a $50.5 billion pension fund tripled its investment in Palantir to 907,675 shares, and that move provided the stock a boost of about 2.5% Monday morning.

Just nine analysts cover the stock. Of those, five have rated the shares at Hold and only one recommends buying shares. At a price of around $26.50, the stock trades above its median price target of $25. At the high price target of $31, the potential upside is about 17%.

The consensus third-quarter revenue estimate is $386.46 million, up 2.9% sequentially and 33.5% year over year. Adjusted EPS are forecast at $0.04, flat sequentially and down by 33% year over year. For the full year, current estimates call for EPS of $0.16, down nearly 15%, on sales of $1.51 billion, up nearly 38%.

The stock trades at 164.7 times expected 2021 EPS, 124.0 times estimated 2022 earnings and 92.8 times estimated 2023 earnings. Palantir stock’s 52-week range is $13.18 to $45.00, and the company does not pay a dividend.

Workhorse

Over the past 12 months, shares of Workhorse Group Inc. (NASDAQ: WKHS) have lost about 60%, including a jump of about 140% in early February. The big drop came when the U.S. Postal Service awarded a contract for new delivery vans to a competitor. In September, the company suspended production and recalled all the electric vans it had already built. The stock dropped another 8% Friday following a report that the Department of Justice was investigating the company.

Also, the same pension fund that loaded up on Palantir stock sold its entire holding of 65,033 shares of Workhorse stock at the same time. (The fund also sold its entire holding of 180,823 shares of electric semi maker Nikola.) Workhorse’s shares have recovered to trade up more than 3.5% early Monday.

Of seven analysts covering the stock, five have put a Hold rating on the stock and the other two have a rating of Buy. At a price of around $6.80, the upside potential based on a median price target of $8 is 17.6%. At the high price target of $18, the upside potential is 165%.

Third-quarter revenue is forecast at $90 million, down 25.5% sequentially but up about 38% year over year. Analysts expect Workhorse to post an adjusted loss per share for the quarter of $0.21, slightly better than the $0.26 per-share loss in the prior quarter but worse than the loss per share of $0.15 a year ago. For the full year, the adjusted loss is forecast at $1.28 per share, better than the year-ago loss of $1.89, on sales of $4.14 million, up nearly 200%.

Workhorse is not expected to post a profit in 2021, 2022 or 2023. The stock trades at an enterprise value-to-sales multiple of 187.4. For 2022 and 2023, the multiple is 9.3 and 2.6, respectively. The stock’s 52-week range is $6.02 to $42.96 and Workhorse does not pay a dividend.

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