What the AOL Upgrade Means for Mutual Fund Investors (AOL)

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What the AOL Upgrade Means for Mutual Fund Investors (AOL)

Shauna O'Brien Jan 08, 2015

Before Thursday’s opening bell, Evercore ISI boosted its price target on AOL, Inc (AOL). Here’s what the move means for mutual fund investors.

Inside the Analyst Move

Evercore ISI analyst Andrew McNellis boosted his price target on AOL from $48 to $52. This new price target suggests an 8% upside from the stock’s current price.

According to the analyst: “We continue to view AOL as an attractive way for investors to capture positive trends in both programmatic advertising and online video, as Adap.tv and other tools in its programmatic ad stack continue to help marketers consolidate data and drive efficiencies in branded advertising with more targetable and engaging ad formats. In this report, we find that AOL’s advantage within video continues to accelerate from a consumer perspective, with recent traffic data showing user growth that outpaces larger platforms, including Facebook. Additionally, using an analysis of publisher penetration data, along with other industry checks, we find AOL’s exposure to ad fraud to be well managed, despite recent industry estimates that it will account for up to 15% of lost ad revenue in 2015.”

Potential Verizon Deal in the Spotlight

On Tuesday, reports were released that Verizon (VZ) may be interested in acquiring AOL. Although VZ has not yet approached AOL, the potential takeover news has sent shares of AOL soaring. AOL is currently trading at 19x 2015 earnings estimates, which is a fair valuation. Despite its attractive valuation, AOL may not have many catalysts if this deal does not happen.

Mutual Funds to Watch

Investors interested in AOL may consider one of the mutual funds listed below. These funds currently hold the largest stakes in the company.

The Bottom Line

The funds above offer investors a diverse group of holdings. Investors interested in AOL may also be interested in Google (GOOG) and Yahoo (YHOO).

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