Barely anyone is willing to bet against Alphabet ahead of its earnings

GettyGoogle CEO Sundar Pichai
  • Alphabet, the parent company of Google, is scheduled to report earnings after Monday’s closing bell.
  • The stock has the lowest short interest as a percentage of float of all the internet names.
  • Shares have slightly outperformed the broader market with an 8.5% gain this year, but they’re down about 12% since hitting their all-time high last July.
  • Watch Alphabet trade live.

Alphabet is the next tech giant set to report its quarterly results, with the fourth-quarter earnings for Google’s parent company due out after Monday’s closing bell.

The report comes amid a maelstrom of technology earnings as Twitter,Snap, and Spotify are scheduled to release their own results later this week.

Notably, Alphabet has the lowest level of short interest as a percentage of float of all the internet names tracked by the investment research firm Instinet. In other words, a relatively low number of traders are betting the stock will fall, compared to technology peers Match Group, Roku, and Snap. Alphabet’s short interest as a percentage of its float is just 0.62%, according to S3 Partners, a financial technology and analytics firm.

Here’s a look, in a chart from Instinet analysts led by Mark Kelley:

Short interest as a percentage of float.InstinetShort interest as a percentage of float.

Alphabet shares have soared 8.5% so far this year, just barely outperforming the broader market. Still, the stock is down about 12% since hitting an all-time high last July.

Alphabet is expected to move about 5% in either direction following its report, according to an options-market analysis from Susquehanna derivatives strategists. That’s slightly higher than the stock’s average realised move of 3.5% over the company’s prior eight earnings reports.

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Wall Street analysts covering Alphabet are overwhelmingly bullish. Of the 43 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, two rate it a “hold” and 41 say it’s a “buy.” None of the analysts have a “sell” rating.

In his latest report, UBS analyst Eric Sheridan listed Alphabet as one of his top picks in the internet space for this year. Sheridan, who rates the stock a “buy” with a $US1,400 price target, pointed specifically to stable growth trends, the potential for improving margins this year, and opportunities in its cloud, hardware, and Waymo businesses.

Alphabet is expected to report earnings of $US10.86 a share on revenue of $US31.3 billion, according to analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. For the third quarter, Alphabet reported earnings of $US13.06 per share on $US27.2 billion in revenue.

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