Sirius XM At $4.60? $5? Analysts Continue Upgrades

| About: Sirius XM (SIRI)

For Sirius XM (NASDAQ:SIRI) investors, a recent string of analyst upgrades around the company's Q2 earnings call must be music to their ears. To both investors and analysts alike it seems that the Q2 call impressed. This may not be evident in the share price which has flat lined on decreasing volume near $3.75 per share after the call, but certainly is evident in the increasing price targets issued by those who closely follow the company.

Let's take a look:

Wunderlich Securities, analyst Matthew Harrigan, $4.00:

Following a recent price target upgrade heading into Sirius XM Radio's Q2 earnings release, Wunderlich Securities Media Analyst Matthew Harrigan raises his price target further, from $3.50 to $4.00, reiterating his previous HOLD rating.

Harrigan sees continuing upside for Sirius XM coming from the POV (Previously Owned Vehicle) market, with 1.5 million+ in gross self-pay additions expected in full-year 3013. "We were especially taken with CFO David Frear's comment that the new mindset at Sirius XM is that the company is tracking and managing a growing installed base of enabled vehicles/VINs as well as an actual subscriber base that had been dominated by OEM customer originations," says Harrigan.

Of note should be that Harrigan had previously upgraded his price target on July 23rd to $3.50 and then again upgraded to $4 after the Q2 call. Obviously the call impressed.

RBC Capital Markets, analyst David Bank, $4.00:

While Bank sees Sirius XM continuing to "fire on all cylinders" operationally, in a addition to accelerating capital returns, he didn't see anything in Sirius XM's Q2 results and commentary to warrant a material change in his model or valuation methodology. Noting Sirius XM's pre-announcement of Q2 subscriber additions and the company's "tendency toward conservative guidance," Bank didn't see any real surprises in Sirius XM's operational metrics or guidance. Although, Bank notes reported Q2 self pay churn of 1.7% as one exception, noting that strong retention and increasing migrations likely helped drive churn to ~300bps better than analyst consensus. Bank believes SIRI is fairly valued, and the increase in his equity price target to $4.00 is largely the result of his moving forward valuation multiples to 2014.

While Bank was apparently not as impressed with the call, his estimates were moved forward to 2014 expectations. It is my opinion that the $4 targets expressed by Harrigan and Bank are on the conservative side. It's hard for me to get on board with a $4 2014 price target, only 6.7% over the current $3.75 share price and only 4.9% over the recent high of $3.81. Sirius XM's share buy back program should return at least that much to shareholders over the next 12 to 18 months, and if company performance is expected to continue then I would think a higher price target than $4 is warranted.

But an upgrade is an upgrade, and investors should be pleased that these targets were moved up and not kept steady or moved down.

Another price target at $4 per share includes the target set by Evercore Partners.

Barclays Capital, $4.50 per share:

A new research call from Barclays in the media sector on Wednesday rated Sirius XM shares as Overweight and the price target is $4.50 for a one-year outlook...

... The research report is on the heels of yet another favorable debt refinancing move, which was perfected under prior CEO, Mel Karmazin. Sirius XM Radio priced an offering of $600 million in senior notes due all the way out in 2021, some eight years out, at only a 5.75% coupon. Sirius said at the time that the proceeds from these new notes and its cash on hand would be used to redeem its outstanding 8.75% senior notes that were set to mature in 2015. Without considering that pay-up, that is a 300 basis point savings ,and it pushes out an upcoming maturity out another eight years.

Goldman Sachs, $4.25 per share:

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. updated their model ahead of quarterly results, following Sirius XM Radio Inc.'s release of stronger than expected 2Q13 net adds. They forecast 2Q revenue/adjusted EBITDA of $938mn/$278mn (+11.7%/+17.1% yoy), both slightly above consensus of $935/$273mn. Goldman Sachs raise their 12-month price target to $4.25 (from $3.50), as they roll forward to 2014YE.

Barrington, $4.25 and Lazard Capital $5 per share:

according to

Barrington believes that Sirius XM's subscriber gains were "exceptionally good," and the firm thinks the company's growth momentum remains intact. It keeps an Outperform rating on the shares...

... Sirius XM price target raised to $5 from $4 at Lazard Capital.

John Tinker* of Maxim Group, $4.60 per share:

Tinker recently raised his price target on SIRI from $4.20 to $4.60 ahead of Sirius XM's second quarter earnings and reiterated his $4.60 price target and BUY rating following the Q2 results and conference call.

This is a great spread of price targets and in my opinion investors would do well to consider the broad range of opinions offered by the analysts listed here as well as others not listed and make their own decisions as to personal price targets they are comfortable with.

My target, $4.50 :

My personal target of a $4.50 'hit' in or before January of 2014 may be more bullish than the current spread of targets provided by the analysts listed above, but it should be noted that my target is the target that the price may 'hit.' Analyst targets generally are for fair value, and will represent the median price that investors can expect for their typically 12 month time frames. Any way you slice it, it appears that the word on the street is further price appreciation for Sirius XM, and that should be music to investor's ears.

*To hear an extensive interview with John Tinker between Demian Russian of Satellite Radio Playground, fellow author Spencer Osborne of and myself, please visit this link here. The 80 minute show offers an in depth Q+A with John Tinker and provides a wealth of information for investors. John has been 'on the money' with his research and targets for a long time now and I think he provides an excellent perspective from his extensive understanding of the space.

Disclosure: I am long SIRI. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional disclosure: I am long SIRI January 2014 calls at $2 to $3.50. I am long SIRI August $3.50 calls.