Investors have great interest in Smith & Wesson Brands Inc. (SWBI), Upwork Inc. (UPWK)

Smith & Wesson Brands Inc. (NASDAQ: SWBI) shares are 114.17% up in the year-to-date (YTD) period and have moved 15.12% or $2.62 higher in the latest trading session. However, stock’s trailing 12-month performance remains nearly +260.05% lower. Comparatively, the stock is -28.48% down YTD and 84.20% over the trailing 3-month period. If we look at the shorter duration, its week performance is -13.40% and -17.36% over the month.

Analyst Recommendations

On July 08, 2020, Lake Street recommended the SWBI stock is a Buy, while earlier, Cowen had Resumed the stock as a Outperform on August 25, 2020. 5 analysts offering the recommendations for the stock have a consensus rating of 2.50 to suggest that the SWBI stock is a “Moderate Buy. 0 of the 5 analysts rate the stock as a “Sell”, while 0 has rated it as “Underweight”. 3 recommend buying, with 0 rating it as an Overweight.

The stock currently trades at $19.88 and analysts tracking its performance over the next 12 months have a consensus estimate price target of $26.67. The forecasts give the Smith & Wesson Brands Inc. stock a price target range of $22.00 on the higher side while at least one analyst think the stock could plunge to a low of $18.43. The two limits represent an upside potential of 9.64% or -7.87%.

Earnings Forecast

Analysts estimate the earnings to increase 42.50% in the current quarter to $0.45, up from the $0.03 reported in the same quarter a year ago. For the current year, earnings should grow to an average of $1.72, up 20.60% from $0.82 reported last year. Analysts also offered guidance for the next financial quarter, with their average projected EPS at between $0.2 and $0.68. Wall Street estimates earnings per share to be at an average of $0.91 for the next year.

Insider Transactions Summary

According to SEC data, total insider shares purchases at the company stands at 26 over the last 12 months, while SEC filings reveal that there have been 8 insider sales over the same period. Insiders have purchases 352,161 shares while those sold by company executives and officers stand at 49,902. The last 3 months have seen insiders trade a total of 20,000 and 20,000 in purchases and sales respectively.

Cupero Susan Jean, sold 1,385 shares worth $25318.0 at $18.28 per share on Jun 24. The insider had earlier sold another 1,439 SWBI shares valued at $26233.0 on Jun 24. The shares were sold at $18.23 per share.

Upwork Inc. (NASDAQ:UPWK), on the other hand, is trading around $14.67 with a market cap of $1.85B and analyst research firms have a positive stance on its shares. Analysts predict that the stock will reach $18.17 and spell out a more modest performance – a 19.26% return. Some analysts are even forecasting -$0.33 per share in earnings this year on a short term (1 year) basis.

Let us briefly look at the Upwork Inc. (UPWK) financials, with a focus on its operating details as indicated in its earnings report for the last quarter.

Company balance sheet and cash flow

UPWK’s operating margin was negative on the trailing 12 months basis, remaining steady at -9.60%, while the operating expenses over the recent quarter were at $73.52 million. This represented a 16.01% of the company’s total revenues which amounted $87.53 million. With this in place, we can see that the company’s diluted EPS declined -$0.09 on the year-over-year period, shrinking to -$0.02 as given in the last earnings report.

In terms of the balance sheet & cash flow as of (Sep 2020), the total assets figure advanced to $488.85 million from $482.07 million over the previous quarter. Short term investments amounted to $69.61 million while total current assets were at $318.15 million. The cash flow from operating activities totaled $6.66 million, significantly higher than the -$27.83 million reported in the year-ago quarter. The company’s free cash flow for the quarter was $1.03 million.

Insider activity

Insiders have transacted a total of 57 times at Upwork Inc. over the last 6 months, with insider purchases undertaken 39 times and accounting for 1,707,840 shares. Insider sales totaled 949,863 shares over the same period, with these deals completed in 18 transactions. Looking at these numbers, we realize that net purchases over that period are 21.0 shares. Insiders now hold a total of 10.93M shares after the latest sales, with 16.70% net shares purchased.

Major holders

Insiders own 1.70% of the company shares, while shares held by institutions stand at 73.90% with a share float percentage of 108.68M. Investors are also buoyed by the number of investors in a company, with Upwork Inc. having a total of 200 institutions that hold shares in the company. The top two institutional holders are Vanguard Group, Inc. (The) with over 7.19 million shares worth more than $103.82 million. As of Jun 29, 2020, Vanguard Group, Inc. (The) held 5.98% of shares outstanding.

The other major institutional holder is Goldfarb Andrew P, with the investment firm holding over 7.05 million shares as of Jun 29, 2020. The firm’s total holdings are worth over $101.87 million and represent 5.87% of shares outstanding.