HomeMost PopularTech StocksIs Vital Farms (VITL) a Buy as Wall Street Analysts Look Optimistic?

Is Vital Farms (VITL) a Buy as Wall Street Analysts Look Optimistic?

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The recommendations of Wall Street analysts are often relied on by investors when deciding whether to buy, sell, or hold a stock. Media reports about these brokerage-firm-employed (or sell-side) analysts changing their ratings often affect a stockโ€™s price. Do they really matter, though?

Letโ€™s take a look at what these Wall Street heavyweights have to say about Vital Farms (VITL) before we discuss the reliability of brokerage recommendations and how to use them to your advantage.

Vital Farms currently has an average brokerage recommendation (ABR) of 1.94, on a scale of 1 to 5 (Strong Buy to Strong Sell), calculated based on the actual recommendations (Buy, Hold, Sell, etc.) made by nine brokerage firms. An ABR of 1.94 approximates between Strong Buy and Buy.

Of the nine recommendations that derive the current ABR, four are Strong Buy and one is Buy. Strong Buy and Buy respectively account for 44.4% and 11.1% of all recommendations.

Brokerage Recommendation Trends for VITL

Broker Rating Breakdown Chart for VITL

Check price target & stock forecast for Vital Farms here>>>

While the ABR calls for buying Vital Farms, it may not be wise to make an investment decision solely based on this information. Several studies have shown limited to no success of brokerage recommendations in guiding investors to pick stocks with the best price increase potential.

Are you wondering why? The vested interest of brokerage firms in a stock they cover often results in a strong positive bias of their analysts in rating it. Our research shows that for every โ€œStrong Sellโ€ recommendation, brokerage firms assign five โ€œStrong Buyโ€ recommendations.

In other words, their interests arenโ€™t always aligned with retail investors, rarely indicating where the price of a stock could actually be heading. Therefore, the best use of this information could be validating your own research or an indicator that has proven to be highly successful in predicting a stockโ€™s price movement.

Zacks Rank, our proprietary stock rating tool with an impressive externally audited track record, categorizes stocks into five groups, ranging from Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) to Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), and is an effective indicator of a stockโ€™s price performance in the near future. Therefore, using the ABR to validate the Zacks Rank could be an efficient way of making a profitable investment decision.

ABR Should Not Be Confused With Zacks Rank

In spite of the fact that Zacks Rank and ABR both appear on a scale from 1 to 5, they are two completely different measures.

Broker recommendations are the sole basis for calculating the ABR, which is typically displayed in decimals (such as 1.28). The Zacks Rank, on the other hand, is a quantitative model designed to harness the power of earnings estimate revisions. It is displayed in whole numbers โ€” 1 to 5.

It has been and continues to be the case that analysts employed by brokerage firms are overly optimistic with their recommendations. Because of their employersโ€™ vested interests, these analysts issue more favorable ratings than their research would support, misguiding investors far more often than helping them.

On the other hand, earnings estimate revisions are at the core of the Zacks Rank. And empirical research shows a strong correlation between trends in earnings estimate revisions and near-term stock price movements.

Furthermore, the different grades of the Zacks Rank are applied proportionately across all stocks for which brokerage analysts provide earnings estimates for the current year. In other words, at all times, this tool maintains a balance among the five ranks it assigns.

Another key difference between the ABR and Zacks Rank is freshness. The ABR is not necessarily up-to-date when you look at it. But, since brokerage analysts keep revising their earnings estimates to account for a companyโ€™s changing business trends, and their actions get reflected in the Zacks Rank quickly enough, it is always timely in indicating future price movements.

Is VITL a Good Investment?

In terms of earnings estimate revisions for Vital Farms, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has increased 21.8% over the past month to $0.94.

Analystsโ€™ growing optimism over the companyโ€™s earnings prospects, as indicated by strong agreement among them in revising EPS estimates higher, could be a legitimate reason for the stock to soar in the near term.

The size of the recent change in the consensus estimate, along with three other factors related to earnings estimates, has resulted in a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) for Vital Farms. You can see the complete list of todayโ€™s Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks here >>>>

Therefore, the Buy-equivalent ABR for Vital Farms may serve as a useful guide for investors.

Research Chief Names โ€œSingle Best Pick to Doubleโ€

From thousands of stocks, 5 Zacks experts each have chosen their favorite to skyrocket +100% or more in months to come. From those 5, Director of Research Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all.

This company targets millennial and Gen Z audiences, generating nearly $1 billion in revenue last quarter alone. A recent pullback makes now an ideal time to jump aboard. Of course, all our elite picks arenโ€™t winners but this one could far surpass earlier Zacksโ€™ Stocks Set to Double like Nano-X Imaging which shot up +129.6% in little more than 9 months.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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