Google seen best placed for growth as it transitions to mobile

Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:28am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Google Inc (GOOGL.O: Quote) (GOOG.O: Quote) is the best placed of any company to benefit from the shift to mobile, increased local advertising and wearables, analysts said after the search giant posted its 18th straight quarter of 20 percent-plus revenue growth.

At least eight brokerages raised their price targets on the stock on Friday by as much as $75, to a high of $745.

Google shares were up 2 percent at $593.37 in early trading on the Nasdaq.

The company, which is also set to benefit from the so-called "internet of things", said on Thursday that second-quarter revenue rose 22 percent to $15.96 billion, beating the average analyst estimate of $15.61 billion.

Growth was driven by the company's core search business, YouTube and product-listing ads, which combined to drive three times as much mobile traffic for merchants compared with last year, Jefferies analysts wrote in a note.

Brokerage Jefferies maintained its "buy" rating and $700 price target on the stock.

Of the 46 analysts covering Google, 36 have a "buy" or a higher rating on the stock and 10 have a "hold". There are no "sell" ratings, according to StarMine data.

Google earns most of its revenue from advertising.

The number of "paid clicks" by consumers on ads serviced by Google increased 25 percent year-on-year in the quarter.   Continued...

 
A computer user poses in front of a Google search page in this photo illustration taken in Brussels May 30, 2014.  REUTERS/Francois Lenoir