The Polarizing Story That Is Shopify

Shopify Inc (US) SHOP stock has been all over the map so far in 2017, surging from under $45 per share at the beginning of the year to as high as $123.94 in September. However, the stock has since tanked to below $90 per share before rebounding to trade at around $95.70 on Wednesday.

The stock’s unpredictable and erratic behavior seems is a reflection of the fact that even analysts can’t agree on what do to with Shopify.

The Bearish Calls

The most recent leg of the selloff was triggered by a short report by Citron Research’s Andrew Left released on Oct. 4. Left called Shopify a “get rich quick scheme” and set a price target of $60 for the stock.

Left’s not alone in preaching caution regarding Shopify. On Oct. 9, CNBC's Jim Cramer told viewers to be careful about putting more money into the stock.

The following day, Dynamic Funds Portfolio Manager Alex Lane told BNN that his fund is short Shopify because its “valuation got a little bit ahead of itself” and it's “clearly a stock that was based on a lot of euphoria.”

Left’s target suggests more than 36 percent downside ahead for Shopify, which is already down 22 percent from its September high.

Related Link: Citron Calls Shopify's Business 'Dirtier Than Herbalife', Values Shares At $60

Bulls Hold Steady

But while Left and other bears are looking for double-digit downside, other analysts believe the selloff is an opportunity to buy the dip.

Within the past 15 days, Roth Capital, Canaccord Genuity, Robert W Baird, National Bank and Piper Jaffray have all reiterated bullish ratings on Shopify, and all have price targets ranging from $110 to $120. According to CNN Money, the 26 Wall Street analysts covering the stock have a median price target of $110, but a huge range of targets that stretches from $88 (excluding Left’s $60 target)on the low end to $146 on the high end.

An list of some of the most recent analyst actions related to Shopify is included in the table below.

Strangely enough, a pair of big-name Wall Street firms that downgraded Shopify earlier this year, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America, haven’t weighed in on the stock since June and May, respectively.

Wall Street Showdown

CNN notes that Shopify analyst bulls still outweigh bears by a count of 17 to one. Even after the large pullback, bulls have still ruled the day in 2017, up 122.8 percent year-to-date.

But while most bulls don’t seem to be wavering on their Shopify calls, neither is Left. Citron is reportedly working on another bearish report on Shopify that will reveal issues within the company that weren't discussed in the original report.

Posted In: Alex LaneAndrew LeftCitronCitron ResearchLong IdeasShort SellersJim CramerShort IdeasPrice TargetTop StoriesAnalyst RatingsTechTrading Ideas

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