Shares of Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) are plummeting on the back of weaker than expected top-line results and guidance in the third quarter, dragging the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index on track for its worst monthly performance since the financial crisis.
While investors have sent shares of the Seattle-based e-commerce and cloud computing giant down nearly 9% on Friday morning at a price of $1,624.27, analysts on the Street remain confident overall on their long-term bullish outlooks, as outlined by CNBC.
Massive Growth Opportunities Remain Intact for E-Retail Giant
UBS analyst Eric Sheridan, who rates Amazon stock at buy, highlighted "multiple pathways" ahead for top-line growth, including international markets, grocery, cloud, consumer packaged goods, and private label, writing that the investment firm is "not worried about AMZN's ability to produce sustained LT rev growth." That being said, Sheridan indicated that the stock could trade sideways over the next few months.
Analysts at Barclays similarly remain firm in their upbeat forecast, noting that they "don't see any real structural issue" with Amazon although they recommend investors "wait for the dust to settle a bit before adding to positions." Barclays' Ross Sandler expects the "growth scare" to work itself out by the first quarter of 2019.
Goldman Sachs' Heath Terry called the e-retail leader the "best risk/reward in Internet given the relatively early stage shift of workloads to the cloud, the transition of traditional retail online, and share gains in its advertising business." Terry believes his peers on the Street are underestimating the long-term benefits of each business for Amazon.
Deutsche Bank analysts reiterated their view that there is a "massive runway ahead," for the tech behemoth, still up nearly 40% YTD compared to the S&P 500's 1.1% loss in 2018.
Morgan Stanley's Brian Nowak noted that share price weakness is largely an issue of timing, given the market is increasingly turning away from growth stocks, which drove the decade-long bull market.
Despite maintaining a buy rating on Amazon stock, Bank of America acknowledged that deceleration in growth is a concern given competitors' strength, citing traditional retailer Walmart Inc.'s (WMT) U.S. e-commerce business up 40%.
J.P. Morgan's Doug Anmuth wrote that Amazon remains a top pick, despite lowering his price target by $100 to $2,100. "We believe any pullback will prove to be a good buying opportunity," he added.
Ultimately, it's likely that Amazon stock will struggle through a pullback moving into 2019, yet the majority on the Street remains steadfast in their long-term thesis relying on massive growth opportunities for the tech disruptor across industries.