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Why Okta Shares Rose 26% In April

By Anders Bylund – May 9, 2019 at 9:43AM

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The provider of cloud-based sign-in and identity management services wowed analysts at an annual tech conference.

What happened

Shares of access control specialist Okta (OKTA 0.18%) gained 25.8% in April 2019, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. Analysts left the company's annual technology conference and analyst day in high spirits, often issuing "buy" ratings or lifting target prices based on what Okta told them at that event.

So what

Analyst firm Piper Jaffray now calls Okta a "top pick," while Needham's buy rating was paired with a price target more than 20% above the share price at the time. Analysts appreciate Okta's stellar growth trends, a "winning competitive position," and a tendency to win contracts formerly managed by tech giants like Oracle and Microsoft. Okta also launched several new products at the Oktane19 conference, and Needham analyst Alex Henderson thought that at least two of those were "important" for the company's future.

Close-up of a computer keyboard on which every key is labeled with a dollar sign

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

Okta's stock is absolutely crushing the market, rising 124% over the last 12 months and 65% in 2019 alone. The company is not yet profitable, and its shares trade at nosebleed valuations when measured against its sales or book value; investors taking the leap today are betting on consistent hypergrowth for the foreseeable future.

Oktane19 fed the optimistic investor flames in several ways, and it's no shock to see share prices soaring after an event like that. This stock isn't for everyone, but growth investors with a high risk tolerance might want to take a closer look at Okta.

Teresa Kersten, an employee of LinkedIn, a Microsoft subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Anders Bylund has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Microsoft and Okta. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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