Twitter Inc.’s (NYSE: TWTR) shares rose Thursday after Bank of America Merrill Lynch upgraded the stock from neutral to buy, citing increased usage by younger people and more engagement by its current users, as per CNBC.
Bank of America raised the firm’s price target of USD 31 to USD 39. Stocks opened Thursday’s session trading 2% higher, at USD 32.93.
“Churn remains elevated, but improving metrics in the 18-29 demographic suggest more younger users are returning to Twitter, “ the firm said Thursday in a note to clients, citing a social media survey. “Nine percent of users indicated they planned to user Twitter more next year, up from 6 percent in our 2Q survey.” they later added.
According to CNBC, Twitter closed Wednesday at USD 32.25, up more than 30% over the last 12 months. Its competitor Facebook, (FB) is down more than 20% over the same period.
“While Twitter has significantly less time spent per user than Facebook, monetization is also significantly lower than the $25 ARPU Facebook will generate globally in 2018, and $108 in the U.S.,” the note said. “If Twitter can continue to improve engagement and targeting and build out its direct response advertiser base, comps suggest opportunities for significant ARPU increases.”
Along with the strong user data, Bank of America believes Twitter will be a “strong play” as more advertising dollars go to video ads online, as stated by CNBC.