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Priceline Can Sustain 30% Growth: Analyst

Priceline's stock is the highest it's been since 1998, but analyst Chad Bartley thinks the online travel booking company can go even higher.

The Pacific Crest senior research analyst, who initiated coverage with an "outperform" rating and an $885 price target, told CNBC Monday that Priceline can sustain 30 percent growth, with margins in the mid-to-high 40 percent range in terms of ebitda , making it "one of the more profitable tech companies." At 19 times earnings, it's also very attractive in terms of valuations than some of its peers, such as Expedia, he said.

Best known in the U.S. for its former spokesman, actor William Shatner, 78 percent of Priceline's hotel and vacation bookings business is now international, with the bulk of that booking in Europe.

While that has been a "tremendous strategy for them" that has driven the outperformance, Bartley said, he's not ignoring Europe's economic troubles. Priceline's fourth-quarter growth slowdown will continue into the first quarter and through 2013, he said.

So where's the growth going to come from? Asia and Latin America, according to the analyst.

As for the competition, he called Google "definitely a disruptor," with its various products, including its Hotel Finder. However, Bartley doesn't view that as a big risk. "We look to Hotel Finder, Google's product, to drive traffic to Priceline's site," he said. "At this point we're not overly concerned."

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Trader disclosure: On Apr 9, 2012, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders; Joe Terranova is long VRTS; Joe Terranova is long IBM; Joe Terranova is long MCD; Joe Terranova is long EMC; Joe Terranova is long MSFT; Joe Terranova is long GS; Joe Terranova is long HFC; Joe Terranova is long COG; Joe Terranova is long JOY; Joe Terranova is long OXY; Joe Terranova is long LQD; Stephen Weiss is long QCOM; Stephen Weiss is long WLP; Stephen Weiss is long AIG CALLS; Stephen Weiss is long NAV; Stephen Weiss is long HAIN; Stephen Weiss is long JPM; Stephen Weiss is long BAC; Stephen Weiss is short AAPL PUTS; Stephen Weiss is short X; Stephen Weiss is short JCP; Stephen Weiss is short KSS; Stephen Weiss is short XHB; Stephen Weiss is short FXA; Stephen Weiss is short BTU; Stephen Weiss is short ANR; Stephen Weiss is short MT

Dennis Gartman
Dennis Gartman is long gold in yen terms

Chad Bartley
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CNBC.com with wires.

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