Goldman Boosts Six Flags to 'Trading Buy'

Analyst Chris Cox is impressed with the theme park company's early pre-season sales and improvements at its international parks

Goldman Sachs upgraded Six Flags (PKS ) to trading buy from market perform.

Analyst Chris Cox says non-seasonal Q4 results were in line with estimates. He says although Six Flags has had a history of earnings per share shortfalls and while the weather always remains a wild card, he believes management's 7%-8% 2002 EBITDA growth guidance appears increasingly reasonable. He cited improving economic conditions, positive early pre-season sales, strategic changes at international parks, and higher comparable sales against the fall-off after September 11. Cox believes the risk/reward will be the greatest over the next several months, given Six Flag's historical trading patterns. He has a $18.50 target.

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