Qualcomm: With FTC Case Out of the Way, 5G Opportunity Remains Intact

Stock Market

Shares of Qualcomm (QCOM) might have dropped along with the broader market in this week’s bloodbath, but the decline was counterbalanced by some good news.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit sided with Qualcomm when denying the FTC’s (Federal Trade Commission) request for an en banc hearing.

The FTC filed its petition on Sep 25 following the Ninth Circuit Appellate Court’s ruling to reverse a lower-court decision against Qualcomm.

Qualcomm had originally lost an antitrust case against the FTC after it accused the chipmaker of anticompetitive patent licensing in an attempt to tighten its grip on the smartphone modem chip market. But in August, a three-judge panel overturned the ruling, saying the FTC hadn’t established QCOM’s behavior skewed the market in its favor. Should Qualcomm have lost it would have needed to renegotiate its patent licenses, which would have cut into its licensing revenue.

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For Deutsche bank analyst Ross Seymore, the decision removes the final overhang from a case which began all the way back in January 2017. The decision, says Seymore, allows investors to “remain focused on the company’s strong positioning within 5G and the sell through of 5G devices.”

Seymore further added, “We note that QCOM has already signed and implemented new multi-year license agreements with every major handset OEM including Apple, Samsung, and Huawei (100+ agreements covering 5G), with [the] decision likely bolstering Qualcomm in its current and future license negotiations. For QCOM’s QCT business, we continue to see handset market fundamentals improving on customer channel inventory reduction, with investors focusing on 5G modem and RFFE share gains at Apple and other handset OEMs (over 660 designs announced or in development using QCOM 5G solutions).”

All in all, the 5-star analyst rates QCOM shares a Buy rating along with a $127 price target. (To watch Seymore’s track record, click here)

Like the courts, the majority of the Street’s analysts are on Qualcomm’s side. QCOM’s Strong Buy consensus rating is based on 14 Buys and 4 holds. The projection is for 11.5% upside, given the average price target clocks in at $137.60. (See Qualcomm stock analysis on TipRanks)

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analyst. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.

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