Wells Fargo reportedly has told savvy investors that a recent dip in Philip Morris stock is a golden buying opportunity.
Shares of Philip Morris (PM) have rebounded after a difficult year in 2018, Barron’s explained.
“Part of that is the result of the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of Philip Morris’s application to sell its vaping device iQOS, after years of waiting for a decision. Also, after FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb announced his plan to leave the agency, some have suggested that the agency may moderate its tobacco stance, potentially leading to even more gains for the stocks,” Barron’s explained.
The Marlboro maker, also the world’s largest tobacco company, has flagged an industry-wide slowdown in cigarette volumes.
British American Tobacco (BAT), the world’s No. 2 tobacco company, last week warned of steeper declines in cigarette sales globally mainly due to waning demand in its main U.S. market, Reuters reported.
The warning highlighted the challenges dogging the tobacco industry as smokers, particularly in the United States, turn to less harmful alternatives such as e-cigarettes and vaping products.
Meanwhile, tobacco shares fell on Wednesday after reports say that the city of San Francisco could become the first U.S. city to ban sales of e-cigarettes. Tobacco stocks also took a hit from Nielsen data that showed U.K. cigarette sales fell in May, Reuters reported.
Despite the recent selloff amid lingering regulatory uncertainty, Philip Morris stock is up around 15% year to date, a little behind the S&P 500’s 16% gain, Barron’s reported.
Wells Fargo analyst Bonnie Herzog reiterated a "buy" rating and $100 price target on Philip Morris.
She thinks that the recent selloff was unmerited. She said the stock-price dip is an “opportunity for long-term investors to enter or build positions in what we believe is one of the most attractive consumer packaged-goods stocks in terms of growth prospects and yield characteristics (especially attractive right now given the rate environment).”
She also touted company with “leadership of the industry’s pivot toward a highly profitable, reduced-risk product future,” she says.
Philip Morris stock recently traded at $76.65. It has a 52-week high of $92.74 and a 52-week low of $64.67.
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