A focus on opportunistic stocks: Seres Therapeutics Inc. (MCRB), Six Flags Entertainment Corporation (SIX)

Seres Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: MCRB) shares are 667.83% up in the year-to-date (YTD) period and have moved 8.21% or $2.01 higher in the latest trading session. However, stock’s trailing 12-month performance remains nearly +951.19% lower. Comparatively, the stock is -19.73% down YTD and 389.65% over the trailing 3-month period. If we look at the shorter duration, its week performance is 15.12% and 608.29% over the month.

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Analyst Recommendations

On August 11, 2020, Jefferies recommended the MCRB stock is a Buy, while earlier, Piper Sandler had Initiated the stock as a Overweight on August 18, 2020. 8 analysts offering the recommendations for the stock have a consensus rating of 1.70 to suggest that the MCRB stock is a “Strong Buy. 0 of the 8 analysts rate the stock as a “Sell”, while 0 has rated it as “Underweight”. 7 recommend buying, with 0 rating it as an Overweight.

The stock currently trades at $26.49 and analysts tracking its performance over the next 12 months have a consensus estimate price target of $30.93. The forecasts give the Seres Therapeutics Inc. stock a price target range of $41.00 on the higher side while at least one analyst think the stock could plunge to a low of $24.00. The two limits represent an upside potential of 35.39% or -10.37%.

Earnings Forecast

Analysts estimate the earnings to decrease -7.70% in the current quarter to -$0.26, down from the -$0.23 reported in the same quarter a year ago. For the current year, earnings should grow to an average of -$0.97, down -15.90% from -$1.24 reported last year. Analysts also offered guidance for the next financial quarter, with their average projected EPS at between -$0.37 and -$0.19. Wall Street estimates earnings per share to be at an average of -$1.32 for the next year.

Insider Transactions Summary

According to SEC data, total insider shares purchases at the company stands at 5 over the last 12 months, while SEC filings reveal that there have been 1 insider sales over the same period. Insiders have purchases 77,000 shares while those sold by company executives and officers stand at 3,400. The last 3 months have seen insiders trade a total of 0 and 0 in purchases and sales respectively.

The insider had earlier sold another 3,400 MCRB shares valued at $13297.0 on Nov 22. The shares were sold at $3.91 per share.

Six Flags Entertainment Corporation (NYSE:SIX), on the other hand, is trading around $21.73 with a market cap of $1.73B and analyst research firms have a negative stance on its shares. Analysts predict that the stock will reach $23.17 and spell out a more modest performance – a 6.21% return. Some analysts are even forecasting -$4.29 per share in earnings this year on a short term (1 year) basis.

Let us briefly look at the Six Flags Entertainment Corporation (SIX) financials, with a focus on its operating details as indicated in its earnings report for the last quarter.

Company balance sheet and cash flow

SIX’s operating margin was positive on the trailing 12 months basis, remaining steady at 13.90%, while the operating expenses over the recent quarter were at $128.67 million. This represented a -572.14% of the company’s total revenues which amounted $19.14 million. With this in place, we can see that the company’s diluted EPS declined -$1.62 on the year-over-year period, growing to $0.94 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 $2.97 billion from $2.72 billion over the previous quarter. The cash flow from operating activities totaled -$110.7 million, significantly lower than the $126.2 million reported in the year-ago quarter. The company’s free cash flow for the quarter was -$186.33 million.

Insider activity

Insiders have transacted a total of 30 times at Six Flags Entertainment Corporation over the last 6 months, with insider purchases undertaken 28 times and accounting for 1,209,722 shares. Insider sales totaled 3,981 shares over the same period, with these deals completed in 2 transactions. Looking at these numbers, we realize that net purchases over that period are 26.0 shares. Insiders now hold a total of 5.57M shares after the latest sales, with 34.90% net shares purchased.

Major holders

Insiders own 1.50% of the company shares, while shares held by institutions stand at 82.70% with a share float percentage of 76.15M. Investors are also buoyed by the number of investors in a company, with Six Flags Entertainment Corporation having a total of 402 institutions that hold shares in the company. The top two institutional holders are H Partners Management, LLC with over 7.8 million shares worth more than $149.84 million. As of Jun 29, 2020, H Partners Management, LLC held 9.20% of shares outstanding.

The other major institutional holder is Vanguard Group, Inc. (The), with the investment firm holding over 7.46 million shares as of Jun 29, 2020. The firm’s total holdings are worth over $143.37 million and represent 8.80% of shares outstanding.

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