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AG Edwards Ups Hibbett Sporting Goods to Buy

AG Edwards upgraded Hibbett Sporting Goods (HIBB) to buy from hold.

Analyst Robert Buchanan says there's no better-positioned retailer around than Hibbett Sporting Goods in his view, what with Hibbett consistently dominating upper price elevations of team-oriented sporting goods sales in small towns. He finds Hibbett compelling in light of projected long-term annual earnings per share growth of 25%, alongside the stock's current 15% premium to the broader market based on his EPS forecast of $2.02 for fiscal year 2007 (January).

Buchanan sees 25 cents second-quarter fiscal year 2006 EPS, well above the 20 cents consensus estimate, which assumes a 6% rise in same-store sales and 300-basis-point growth in gross margin. He has a $45 price target on the stock.

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