Company Update: Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) – Groupon: Morgan Stanley Likes Technology Renovation in Web site, Email, Mobile

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) [at Barrons.com] – Morgan Stanley’s Scott Devitt today pounds the table in favor of shares of Internet daily deals purveyor Groupon (GRPN), reiterating an Overweight rating and a $15 price target — mind you, with a target time frame of 2015 — writing that his meeting with management gives him confidence the company is “on the path to become a unique mobile commerce marketplace at scale.” Groupon shares today are up 51 cents, or 5.3%, at $10.13. Devitt observes that Groupon still has to build out some major areas of its technology, things as simple as how it tracks deals it has issued: Underpinning these initiatives is the fact that Groupon is still in the process of building the appropriate technology infrastructure to drive these initiatives. For instance, Mr. Lefkofsky noted that while it is one of the biggest email marketers in the world, Groupon does not have a way to track the deals it offered to a consumer in previous emails and which ones a consumer may have clicked on.
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Morgan Stanley (MS), valued at $60.04B, began trading this morning at $30.50.
 
Looking at today’s trading action, the company’s one day range from $30.37 to $31.04 with a trailing 52-week range being $17.22 to $31.85.
 
Priced at 14.97x this year’s forecasted earnings, MS shares are relatively inexpensive compared to the industry’s 19.19x forward p/e ratio.
 
And for those looking to make a return holding the stock, the company pays shareholders $0.20 per share annually in dividends, yielding 0.70%.
 
Consensus earnings for the current quarter by the 21 sell-side analysts covering the stock is an estimate of $0.49 per share, which would be $0.04 better than the year-ago quarter and a $0.05 sequential decrease. The full-year EPS estimate is $2.03 which would be a $1.90 improvement than last year’s full-year earnings.
 
The quarterly earnings estimate is predicated on a consensus revenue forecast of $8.00 Billion. If reported, that would be a 6.95% increase over the year-ago quarter.
 
Recently, Deutsche Bank downgraded MS from Buy to Hold (Dec 5, 2013). Previously, Oppenheimer downgraded MS from Outperform to Perform.
 
When considering if the stock is under or overvalued, the average price target is $31.94, which is 4.72% above where the stock opened this morning.
 
Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), a financial holding company, provides various financial products and services to corporations, governments, financial institutions and individuals worldwide. The company’s Institutional Securities segment offers financial advisory services on mergers and acquisitions and much more.
 
Tag Helper ~ Stock Code: MS | Common Company name: Morgan Stanley | Full Company name: Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) .

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Read more on Morgan Stanley, Groupon at Wikinvest

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