What happened

Shares of Tableau Software, Inc. (NYSE:DATA) gained 11% in January, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence, after IHS Markit upgraded the company's stock from a negative rating to neutral. Tableau's shares probably benefited from overall optimism in the stock market as well, as the S&P 500 gained 5.6% last month.

So what

Tableau's stock price began rising early in January, after the company announced its new Tableau 10.5 with Hyper software that's able to process analytics much faster than the previous versions. Tableu's CEO, Adam Selipsky, even made a media appearance or two talking up the new software, which may have helped boost investor sentiment during the month.

Blue bar chart and line chart on white background.

Image source: Getty Images.

The company's shares also spiked later in January, after IHS Markit upgraded Tableau's shares to a neutral rating. IHS said that "bearish sentiment" for the company is low and that the economic output in Tableau's sector is expanding.

The stock upgrade and the release of the new software -- combined with investors' general optimism in the stock market last month -- was enough to help keep Tableau's shares ticking upward, and that trend continued into February.

Now what

Tableau's share price is up just a little over 3% since the beginning of this month. The initial spike occurred after the company reported its fourth-quarter and full-year 2017 results. Total revenue was up 6% in 2017, and subscription annual recurring revenue skyrocketed 235% over the past 12 months. Tableau finished 2017 with share price gains of 64%, and the company appears to be starting this year off on the right foot as well.

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