Analysts Are Circling Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (NYSE:PANW): What is the Consensus’ Take?

Sell-side Street analysts covering Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (NYSE:PANW) presently have an average rating of 1.48 on company shares. This consensus rating is using 27 analysts polled by Zacks Research. On a numerical scale from 1 to 5, a rating of 1 or 2 would indicate a Buy recommendation. On the same scale, a 4 or 5 rating would point to a Sell recommendation. A rating of 3 would signify a Hold recommendation.

In addition to the average broker rating, let’s see where the analysts see the stock moving in the near term. In the sell-side reports given to institutions, the research firms often offer a projected target price on the stock. The time frame and criteria can vary depending on the firm, so to get a general feel for where they see the stock heading, we view the consensus number. Based on the 27 analysts covering Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (NYSE:PANW), the top is currently at $210 and the bottom is $150. The mean, or consensus number is $176.666.

Looking at the earnings health of Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (NYSE:PANW), analysts are expecting that the company will report earnings of $-0.38 per share for the current quarterly period on or around 2017-02-28. Last quarter the firm posted earnings of $-0.58 for the quarter. This was $-0.31 away from the analyst consensus, yielding a surprise factor of -114.81%. Large surprise factors can lead to significant stock price movement in the days and months following an earnings report. The Street will be watching to see if Palo Alto Networks, Inc. will meet or beat this quarter.

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