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Alibaba Price Targets Slashed for Record 18th Straight Week

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(Bloomberg) — Wall Street’s average price target for Alibaba Group Holding is set to fall for a record 18th straight week after a cohort of firms lowered their expectations for the shares on regulatory and competition concerns.

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At least four research analysts this week slashed price forecasts on the American Depositary Receipts of the China-based tech giant. Susquehanna International Group’s analyst Shyam Patil was the latest, cutting the number by more than a third to $200 from $310, citing “near-term headwinds” including the regulatory overhang and the slowing economy in China.

Analysts at Needham and Deutsche Bank echoed the views with price target trims recently, the latter also referring to investments in new initiatives that will weigh on margins in the short term. Argus Research came with one of the more conservative calls, downgrading the shares to hold from buy.

Alibaba analysts have been steadily cutting price targets for the e-commerce giant for much of the past year. With another wave of reductions in recent days, the stock’s average 12-month target price — currently at $208 — is set to decline for an 18th straight week in the longest such run on record.

The slide, from $239 a week ago, came after Alibaba released disappointing quarterly results and also reduced revenue guidance for the year ending in March. The current string of cuts dates back to July, when regulators in China launched a sweeping regulatory crackdown on tech firms.

Despite the immediate pressure, a majority of firms maintain a positive outlook for the firm over the long run. Among the 61 analysts following Alibaba that are tracked by Bloomberg, 56 have a buy on the stock and only one rates it a sell.

Shares were up 0.8% at $135 as of 12:45 p.m. in New York on Wednesday and down 42% so far this year.

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