Talking Numbers

Forget earnings, this chart shows why Facebook's a keeper

Facebook reports earnings but is the future already written for the stock?

Social media stocks were down Wednesday ahead of Facebook's earnings report. But, coud Facebook be a stock that will outperform the currently shaky market?

The Global X Social Media ETF (the SOCL), which tracks social media stocks, is off by 2% on Wednesday, with components such as Twitter lower by 1% and LinkedIn down 4%. Minutes before it released its earnings, Facebook was down 2.6%.

(Read: Facebook earnings preview: Teens, mobile & ad growth in focus)

According to Thomson Reuters, the average price target of 40 analysts is $62. On CNBC's Street Signs' Talking Numbers segment, Ron Dottin, Senior U.S. Quantitative Analyst at RBC Capital Markets, believes that is an entirely attainable target.

"If you look at short interest, which is a signal for what the buy side is thinking on the stock," says Dottin, "there are almost no shorts there."

Dottin believes the fundamentals of the company are solid and echoes his colleague Mark Mahaney's sentiment that the Facebook's mobile strategy's turnaround was successful.

"I think it does go higher," says Dottin.

Steven Pytlar, Chief Equity Strategist at Prime Executions, says the charts back up Dottin's enthusiasm.

"This is as good as a chart could probably look given the broader market," says Pytlar. "What really catches our eye is that Facebook is able to hold that old October high while the market and other stocks have not been able to hold their own support."

(Read: Facebook launches 'Trending' to drive event chat)

That high at $54.22 was reached on October 18. After sinking to $45 in November, the stock is now back up and $54 is roughly the support level, according to Pytlar. That gives an indication on how the market is looking at the stock, according to Pytlar.

"Buyers aren't willing to sell it even though there are some negative things going on in the broader market," says Pytlar. "Generally, that can portend some outperformance once the whole market turns around. So, we do like what we're seeing in the charts as well."

To see the full discussion on Facebook with Dottin on the fundamentals and Pytlar on the technicals, watch the video above.

 

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