KeyBanc Reaffirms Their Hold Rating on International Paper Co

By Jason Carr

KeyBanc analyst Adam Josephson reiterated a Hold rating on International Paper Co (NYSE: IP) today. The company’s shares opened today at $56.04, close to its 52-week high of $58.86.

Josephson commented:

“We are modestly increasing our 2017 and 2018 estimates for International Paper (IP) on account of higher export containerboard prices. U.S. OCC prices appear higher than IP expected going into the quarter, but we think the OCC drag will be slightly more than offset by higher export containerboard prices. We are now in line with consensus for 2Q17 as a result, though we remain below for 2017 and well below for 2018 (for 2018, we estimate adj. EBITDA of $3.85 billion, compared to consensus of $4.38 billion). Consensus is assuming 12% growth in 2018 on top of 12% growth in 2017, which doesn’t seem reasonable to us. Key Investment Points Following up on the last point, at no point since 2011 has IP had back-to-back years of double-digit EBITDA growth, and we don’t know why 2017/2018 would be different. The growth in 2017 is boosted by acquisitions, but even so, this expectation doesn’t make sense to us given the Company’s EBITDA performance over the past five years. Perhaps this time will be different, but we are not inclined to think so given how late we are in the current economic expansion.”

According to TipRanks.com, Josephson is a 4-star analyst with an average return of 14.7% and a 53.3% success rate. Josephson covers the Consumer Goods sector, focusing on stocks such as Avery Dennison Corp, Graphic Packaging, and Clearwater Paper.

International Paper Co has an analyst consensus of Moderate Buy, with a price target consensus of $58.75.

The company has a one year high of $58.86 and a one year low of $41.00. Currently, International Paper Co has an average volume of 2.36M.

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International Paper Co. engages in the manufacturing of paper and packaging products. It operates through the following segments: Industrial Packaging, Global Cellulose Fibers, Printing Papers, and Consumer Packaging.