Snowflake can jump 33% as it gains more share in the cloud market, Raymond James say

Snowflake ‘s shares have plummeted 59.2% this year as rising rates threaten popular growth stocks, but Raymond James is “seeing through the whiteout.” Analyst Simon Leopold initiated coverage of Snowflake with an outperform rating, saying in a note to clients Thursday that the company is a “share gainer” and a “pure play” in the growing cloud market. “We think Snowflake’s quality/market position will enable it to outperform as growth proves durable and margins move substantially higher,” Leopold wrote. “With a lack of clear catalysts and an unfavorable market for ‘growth’ stocks, we refrain from a strong buy rating.” Raymond James also slapped a $184 price target on the stock, representing a 33.1% upside from Thursday’s close price. The firm believes Snowflake can grow at a more than 50% compound annual growth rate over the next three years, adding that growing demand for enterprise software in a post-pandemic world will continue to benefit the company. Raymond James also likes Snowflake’s appeal to large and small businesses and the ease of data sharing it offers. “Snowflake lacks public cloud scale, but offsets this with its agnostic position that enables data sharing, a critical differentiator,” Leopold wrote. “The company does not need to make the billions in capital investments; rather, Snowflake runs on the existing public cloud platforms from Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.” Investors have shied away from growth-focused technology stocks and moved into safe-haven sectors like on fears of an economic downturn. It comes as the Federal Reserve hikes interest rates in an effort to curb surging inflation. — CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed reporting

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