Charter Communications – Key Insights for Investors

One of the standouts of today's evening trading session was Charter Communications, which logged a 2.2% performance and outperformed the S&P 500 by 2.0%. The Cable Television stock is now trading at $290.35 per share and may still have upside potential because it is still -12.74% under its average target price of $332.76. Analysts have set target prices ranging from $180.0 to $660.0 dollars per share, and have given the stock an average rating of hold.

Charter Communications's short interest can give us an idea of what future price movements the market expects from the stock. The short interest is the percentage of shares that are tied up in short positions, which will provide gains to the investor only if the stock price falls. The stock's short interest is 12.4% which seems to indicate a mixed sentiment on CHTR

When a stock is sold short, it means an investor has borrowed shares of the stock from their broker, and then sold them at the going market price. The investor hopes for the price to decline, so that they might buy those shares back at a lower price in the future. Once they do, they can return the borrowed shares to their broker, and keep the profit they made on the transaction.

One way to get an idea of the market sentiment on a stock is to check its rate of institutional ownership. In the case of Charter Communications, institutional investors own 71.4% of the shares. This would indicate a positive sentiment towards the stock among institutions. What does this really tell us?

Institutional investors such as hedge funds, investment firms, and wealth managers devote significant resources to identifying good investments. If they have decided to invest in CHTR, it probably means they believe it is a solid investment choice. But it could also mean they are buying up shares in an effort to acquire the company or get seats on the board of directors. Also bear in mind that institutions are fallible (just maybe not quite as fallible as the average retail investor), so they may simply be wrong when they think they've found a good stock.

Overall, there is mixed market sentiment on Charter Communications because its an analyst consensus of some upside potential, a hold rating, an above average percentage of its shares sold short, and an average number of institutional investors. Warren Buffett famously said that in the short term, markets are voting mechanisms, but in the long term, they are weighing mechanisms. This means that long term investors should be aware of a stock's fundamentals before committing.

Buffett was one of the fist investors to focus on free cash flow as a yardstick for a company's health. Here are CHTR's recent cash flows:

Date Reported Cash Flow from Operations ($ k) Capital expenditures ($ k) Free Cash Flow ($ k) YoY Growth (%)
2023 14,433,000 11,115,000 3,318,000 -40.21
2022 14,925,000 9,376,000 5,549,000 -35.51
2021 16,239,000 7,635,000 8,604,000 20.39
2020 14,562,000 7,415,000 7,147,000 56.97
2019 11,748,000 7,195,000 4,553,000 72.33
2018 11,767,000 9,125,000 2,642,000
The above analysis is intended for educational purposes only and was performed on the basis of publicly available data. It is not to be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Any buy, sell, or other recommendations mentioned in the article are direct quotations of consensus recommendations from the analysts covering the stock, and do not represent the opinions of Market Inference or its writers. Past performance, accounting data, and inferences about market position and corporate valuation are not reliable indicators of future price movements. Market Inference does not provide financial advice. Investors should conduct their own review and analysis of any company of interest before making an investment decision.