Square jumps 6% after Guggenheim names it 'best idea' in fintech 

  • The firm raised its price target to $100 from $75 and called payments company Square its “highest conviction name” in financial technology.
  • Square’s stock has popped more than 227 percent year over year and is up more than 136 percent this year alone.
  • The firm predicts Square will generate "substantially higher" subscription and services-based revenue than analysts are expecting for the end of 2019 and beyond.
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Square
Louis Ascui | Fairfax Media | Getty Images
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Square

Even after payments company Square's stock price quadrupled in a year, one analyst is betting that the shares are still cheap.

Guggenheim raised its price target to $100 from $75 Wednesday and named Square its "new best idea" and "highest conviction name" in fintech.

The new target is about 24 percent higher than Tuesday's closing price. Shares closed 6 percent higher following Guggenheim's call, and have seen a 227 percent increase year over year. This year alone, Square is up more than 136 percent.

Guggenheim analyst Jeff Cantwell said in a note to clients Wednesday that he sees revenue coming in significantly higher than the Street's current consensus. "We expect a strong rate of revenue growth for SQ which should drive further share price appreciation."

The firm also named Square its "best idea" two years ago because of what it considered low fourth-quarter 2016 revenue forecasts.

Since then, Square has shifted from its "micromerchant" roots to a focus on selling value-added services, Guggenheim said. The firm predicts Square will generate "substantially higher" subscription and services-based revenue than analysts are expecting for the end of 2019 and beyond.

Guggenheim's revenue estimate is 10 percent above the consensus forecast for adjusted revenue in 2019, according to Cantwell.

In its most recent quarterly report, Square beat Wall Street estimates thanks in part to higher transaction volumes, but the company came up slightly short on adjusted EPS guidance for the third quarter.

Bullish on the Cash App

The company's peer-to-peer payments app, Cash App, is also a bright spot, Guggenheim said, especially as Square is looking to expand the app's capabilities into consumer finance, investing and, potentially, cross-border money transfer.

"We think Cash App's future revenue potential is underappreciated, we see it providing a key 'services' role for the underbanked," Cantwell said.

The Cash App had a breakout second quarter. Customers spent a total $250 million with Cash Card, a debit card linked to the app, in June alone. That's nearly triple the amount they did in December.

The San Francisco-based company, run by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, is best known as a credit card processor but also offers payment hardware. Its peer-to-peer Cash App is growing faster than PayPal's Venmo, according to a recent Nomura report. The company has increased its presence in small-business lending, most recently with an eBay partnership announced in July, and also launched bitcoin trading through its Cash App in January.