ITV share price closes higher as HSBC points to advertising momentum

Analysts turn bullish on broadcaster

ITV share price closes higher as HSBC points to advertising momentum

Shares in ITV (LON:ITV) ended the previous session higher, with analysts at HSBC turning bullish on the blue-chip broadcaster. The broker has pointed to momentum on the advertising front.

ITV’s share price added 3.28 points to end the session at 174.10p, outperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index closing 0.11 percent lower at 7,526.97 points. The group’s shares have added less than one percent to their value over the past year, and are down by some 15 percent in the year-to-date.

HSBC turns bullish on ITV

HSBC lifted its rating on ITV from ‘hold’ to ‘buy’ yesterday, lifting its price target on the stock from 200p to 210p.

“We believe that a lot of the potential negatives are discounted, expectations have bottomed and the market has formed a view that ‘everything is bad’,” the broker pointed out, as quoted by Proactive Investors, arguing that it arguably left “room to beat expectations and close some of the discount to peers”.

While HSBC concedes that it probably is too soon to call the bottom for ITV, comparatives become a lot easier in the coming three quarters, which could see the consensus forecast of a full-year non-advertising revenue year-on-year change improve from its current level of -5.8 percent.

The comments came after the company updated investors on its half-year performance over the summer, posting a drop in revenue. The blue-chip broadcaster, however, reiterated its full-year outlook and lifted its interim payout to shareholders.

Other analysts on blue-chip broadcaster

The 20 analysts offering 12-month price targets for ITV for the Financial Times have a median target of 210.00p on the stock, with a high estimate of 330.00p and a low estimate of 110.00p. As of October 16, the consensus forecast amongst 23 polled investment analysts covering ITV has it that the company will outperform the market. 

As of 08:02 BST, Tuesday, 17 October, ITV plc share price is 174.70p.

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