Palo Alto’s stock rallies toward record high after analyst boosts price target ahead of earnings
Shares of Palo Alto Networks Inc. rallied 1.1% in morning trade Wednesday, putting them on track for a record close, after a Stifel Nicolaus analyst raised the price target on the network security company less than a week before the company reports fiscal third-quarter results. Analyst Gur Talpaz lifted his target to $240, which ties him for the highest of the 41 analysts surveyed by FactSet, from $200, while reiterating his buy rating. “Over the course of the past few weeks, we’ve conducted multiple checks on Palo Alto’s recently closed [fiscal third quarter] (ended April 2018),” Talpaz wrote in a note to clients. “While the majority of our checks pointed to strength, we garner the most comfort from our checks into the company’s supply chain, where we again saw Palo Alto slow down shipments into the end of the quarter, a clear indication in our view of ‘cushion building’ for F4Q18.” The company is scheduled to report results after the June 4 close. The stock has run up 21.2% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has slipped 0.2%.