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Zika Fears Appear Fully Priced Into JetBlue Shares

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Zika Fears Appear Fully Priced Into JetBlue Shares
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While JetBlue Airways Corporation (NASDAQ: JBLU) faces exciting growth opportunities, its shares already reflect Zika fears, Imperial Capital’s Michael Derchin said in a report. He initiated coverage of the company with an Outperform and $21 price target.

JetBlue’s shares have lost about 33 percent over the past 12 months, mainly on account of concerns surrounding the potential impact of economic weakness and the Zika virus on travel to Puerto Rico, which is among the company’s core markets. Shares have also been under pressure due to intensifying competition in Boston and other key markets, Derchin mentioned.

Related Link: Is The Zika Virus Already Impacting The Broader Tourism Market?

Concerns Overrated

Following this selloff, JetBlue’s shares are now fully pricing in Zika fears. Moreover, Derchin believes the company can “hold its own in competitive battles.” JetBlue has expanded its popular Mint product to more long-haul markets. This, along with brand loyalty and a differentiated product strengthen the company’s competitive position.

“While the impact of Zika on bookings is unknown, we expect some passengers to rebook flights to other destinations on JBLU rather than cancel vacation plans entirely, as most leisure travelers purchase tickets well in advance,” the analyst wrote.

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Latest Ratings for JBLU

DateFirmActionFromTo
Nov 2016CitigroupInitiates Coverage OnNeutral
Sep 2016Imperial CapitalInitiates Coverage onOutperform
Jul 2016JP MorganMaintainsNeutral

View More Analyst Ratings for JBLU
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

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