| Baidu +11.7% after earnings, big Cantor upgrade|
- Baidu ADRs (NASDAQ: BIDU) are up 11.7% today to two-year highs, building on yesterday's postmarket surge following a solid Q2 earnings beat.
- Cantor Fitzgerald took the opportunity to upgrade shares two notches, from Underweight to Overweight, and jack up its target price by more than $100: to $260 from $156, a bullish target among analysts that implies 16.3% upside even from today's much higher price.
- Meanwhile, in the company's earnings call, CFO Jennifer Li noted that other revenues have stepped up their contribution nicely, driven by paid membership at streamer iQiyi, which now has more than 30M subscribers -- though the company also draws financial services income and cloud service income among other fees.
- Regarding financial services, the company will consider a more independent structure, in order to get regulatory approval to offer new products.
- "In order to further drive our FSG business, we are beginning the process of working out a future operating structure that allows FSG to operate more independently, to expand into areas that may require domestic licenses and enable stronger, long-term growth," says Chief Operating Officer Qi Lu. "There’s no specific timetable and structure determined at this point."