Shares of Square (NYSE:SQ) climbed more than 6% on Monday, following the release of a bullish analyst note from investment bank Barclays.
Barclays analyst Ramsey El-Assal reiterated his "overweight" rating on Square's stock and boosted his target price from $90 to $115.
El-Assal believes that Square's merchants will be able to bounce back from the coronavirus pandemic better than many investors currently expect. He also predicts that strong demand for Square's Paycheck Protection Program loans will help to offset declines in its Square Capital lending business during the COVID-19 crisis.
Moreover, El-Assal says solid growth in Cash App users and Square's recent acquisition of Spanish peer-to-peer payments start-up Verse could be "underappreciated drivers" for its stock.
With thousands of small businesses forced to close because of the pandemic and corresponding social-distancing measures, investors feared that many Square merchants would not survive. However, if these concerns prove overblown -- and Square's merchants are able to weather not only the closure of their stores but also the current coronavirus-related economic downturn and shifting consumer spending habits -- then investors might also be underestimating Square's near- and long-term growth prospects. And if that's true, then Square's stock likely has more upside ahead.