Monsanto (MON) has had a positive return of 12% so far in 2017, but it has underperformed the S&P 500, which has risen 18% YTD. On December 13, 2017, Monsanto closed at $118.90. The company is waiting for regulatory approval for its proposed merger with Bayer. You can read our recent coverage at The Bayer-Monsanto Merger Deal: An Update.
Let’s look now at analyst ratings and price target.
As of December 13, 2017, 18 analysts are covering MON stock, with a consensus rating of 2.56, or an overall “hold” recommendation for the next 12 months. Month-over-month, the rating was unchanged.
The number of analysts recommending a “strong buy” was unchanged month-over-month at two. The number of analysts recommending a “buy” was also unchanged at four for the same period.
Twelve analysts are recommending a “hold” for the stock, and none of them are recommending a “sell” or “strong sell.”
The current consensus median price target for Monsanto is $128. That translates to a return potential of 7.7%. The mean price target for the stock is $125.20 as of the same date.
The median price of $128 is the price at which Bayer will acquire Monsanto if it gets the necessary regulatory approvals. The current price could be reflecting investors’ apprehension due to these regulatory challenges.
Analysts’ earnings revisions
Analysts have also made revisions to their EPS (earnings per share) expectations for Monsanto. They have revised fiscal 2017 EPS downward by 0.31% to $5.70. For fiscal 2018, they have revised EPS downward by 0.3% to $6.20.
Next, let’s look at the ratings for FMC (FMC).