21st Century Fox Investor Day Gets Positive Wall Street Response

Rupert Murdoch

Lazard Capital Markets analyst Barton Crockett boosts his price target on the stock and says the event was "impressive."

Wall Street analysts on Friday had bullish comments on 21st Century Fox a day after Rupert Murdoch's entertainment conglomerate organized an investor event.

Murdoch, COO Chase Carey and others on Thursday discussed the company's outlook and strategy following the split of the media mogul's empire into 21st Century Fox and publishing company News Corp.

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Lazard Capital Markets analyst Barton Crockett said the investor day for the entertainment giant was "impressive." He reiterated his "buy" rating on the stock and boosted his price target by $4, to $42.

"Fox's inaugural investor day was impressive and featured credible articulation of a long-term growth view that is as solid as we could have hoped for and better than we modeled," Crockett said.

Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne similarly wrote in a report Friday: "Fox's investor day left us even more bullish on the long-term potential for the company and its shares."

He added: "Fox emerges a more focused content and distribution growth story, well positioned to take growing share of global consumer spending and advertising on entertainment."

Sanford C. Bernstein analyst Todd Juenger said that investors often feel that similar analyst events often don't yield much insight. "Fox delivered a thoroughly argued case for each business," he said. "Frankly, this event seemed like a pretty good model for any other company considering such an endeavor."

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And Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker reiterated her "outperform" rating on 21st Century Fox's stock and called the company "best in class."

"Our biggest takeaway post this six-hour investor day is that even while Fox is making significant near-term investments to support long-term growth, the company still has substantial dry powder for M&A and incremental capital returns," she said. Plus, "fundamentals are still better than diversified peers."

Ryvicker increased her longer-term growth assumptions and raised her stock price range from $34-$36 to $39-$41.

E-mail: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai