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Why Penn National Gaming Stock Jumped Today

By Joe Tenebruso – Updated Sep 17, 2020 at 4:26PM

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Analysts are becoming more bullish on the gambling company's growth prospects.

What happened

Shares of Penn National Gaming (PENN 3.29%) climbed 7.6% on Thursday, following positive analyst commentary.

So what 

Stifel analyst Steven Wieczynski reiterated his buy rating on Penn's shares and boosted his price forecast from $47 to $85. His new target represents potential gains for investors of roughly 16% from the stock's current price near $73.

A digital bull is climbing an upwardly sloping stock chart.

Penn National Gaming stock has plenty of upside, one analyst says. Image source: Getty Images.

Wieczynski expects sports betting to heat up as the National Football League season progresses. Penn purchased a 36% stake in online sports publisher Barstool Sports in January for $163 million, and it recently launched a Barstool-branded mobile betting app. Thanks in part to Barstool's massive fan base, Wieczynski and other analysts expect Penn's new app to quickly become a leader in the online sports betting market alongside rivals DraftKings and FanDuel. 

Now what

Looking further ahead, Wieczynski expects more states to legalize sports betting as a means to recoup revenue lost during the current coronavirus-related economic downturn.

"Given the ongoing pandemic and the fact many states are hurting for tax dollars, we believe there could be up to 10 states that could fast-track or formally pass sports betting/iGaming legislation come this November," he said. 

Joe Tenebruso has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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