Amazon.com Inc.’s (AMZN) stock is up 60% so far this year, but that isn’t stopping Morgan Stanley from getting more bullish on the shares, raising its price target to a Wall Street high of $2,500.
At $2,500 a share, the Wall Street firm expects Amazon’s stock to gain an additional 30%. It closed Tuesday’s trading session at $1,932.82. If the shares were to hit $2,500, it would result in a market valuation of around $1.2 trillion, noted CNBC, which covered the Morgan Stanley research note.
AWS Driving Growth
"We have increasing confidence that Amazon's rapidly growing, increasingly large, high margin revenue streams (advertising, AWS, subscriptions) will drive higher profitability and continued upward estimate revisions," wrote analyst Brian Nowak in the note to clients. AWS refers to Amazon Web Services, its cloud computing business, which has long been the field's leader. He said Amazon’s cloud business, subscriptions and advertising will result in $45 billion in profit by 2020 up from $25 billion this year. (See also: 2 Trillion-Dollar Markets Amazon Will Disrupt.)
Morgan Stanley still rates Amazon at overweight and now has the highest price target of all 41 analysts that cover the e-commerce giant. The Morgan Stanley analyst highlighted the fact that Amazon has been able to surpass the high end of its operating profit forecasts by an average of 60% over the past three quarters.
Morgan Stanley Isn’t Alone In Its Bullish Call
Morgan Stanley’s Nowak isn’t alone. Last week MKM Partners raised its price target on the online retailer to $2,215 from $1,840 pointing to its cloud business as well. MKM’s Rob Sanderson said in a research note that AWS should see better margins in the coming year and that the unit will be more valuable than all of Amazon down the road. "We still think that AMZN is the best long-term growth investment available to investors today," wrote the analyst, noting that by 2025 it will control 14.5% of the retail market in the U.S., surpassing Walmart Inc. (WMT). (See also: Amazon Planning a Roku Competitor: Report.)
Earlier this month, a Bloomberg Intelligence analysis found that Amazon sold around $300 billion in products last year, with two thirds of the sales coming from the U.S. alone. That would give Amazon 5% of U.S. retail spending, excluding purchases of vehicles and in restaurants and bars. Bloomberg found Walmart had sales of $381 billion in its last fiscal year. That amounts to 10% of all Americans’ spending on retail, excluding cars, restaurants and bars.