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How this chicken wing stock surged 100% in six months

How this chicken wing stock surged 100% in six months

Recent years have seen the technology sector lead the global stock markets, and 2023 and 2024 feature a major artificial intelligence (AI) boom, with nearly every company that recorded strong results and significant growth being involved with the trend in one way or another.

Perhaps the most dramatic example from last year – and, to an extent, this year – was Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA), the blue-chip chipmaker that saw its stock surge more than 200% in 2023. This year, another AI-involved firm, Super Micro Computer (NASDAQ: SMCI), became a major star of the stock market as it surged 200% in less than 2 months.

Despite the focus on cutting-edge technology – whether it be in the semiconductor industry or pertaining to cloud computing – companies from other sectors have also managed to record strong growth, and few are as striking as the chicken-focused fast-food chain Wingstop (NASDAQ: WING).

WING stock’s staggering rise

Wingstop’s shares started their multi-year rise during the coronavirus pandemic and, indeed, surged from a low close to $55 in the wake of the lockdown announcements in 2020 to their February 23, 2024, highs at nearly $340.

Still, WING saw its biggest stock market advance in 2023, particularly in the last 6 months and Wingstop stock price rose as much as 108.01% in the time frame.

WING 6-month stock price chart. Source: GOOGL

Things have also been going well for WING shares since the start of 2024, and year-to-date (YTD), the stock is 34.5% in the green. 

Wingstop received its latest boost on Wednesday, February 21, when it published a stronger-than-expected earnings report, and even the immediate 4% decline failed to prevent it from closing at its all-time high of $338.83 on Friday, February 23.

The fully digital fast-food chain

One of the major reasons for WING stock’s relentless rise has been the company’s drive to digitalize. and Wingstop is currently undergoing a restructuring process with the end goal of having 100% of its sales be digital.

This transformation is largely driven by the changing patterns of consumption that became most evident during COVID-19, with Wingstop actively attempting to both take advantage of the trend and future-proof against its likely strengthening.

Wingstop stock prediction and future outlook

Despite Wingstop stock being on a nearly continuous rise for well over half a year, Wall Street analysts appear confident WING is not near the end of its bull run. 

The fast-food company holds an overall moderate buy rating on the stock analysis platform TipRanks, with 9 out of the 18 experts analyzed rating as a “buy” and 9 being neutral.

WING analyst rating. Source: TipRanks

Additionally, the more recent rating adjustments have also been overwhelmingly bullish, with Bernstein designating WING as a “buy” on February 13 and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) reiterating the same ranking at the tail end of January.

The 12-month price targets, however, hint that generally, analysts believe Wingstop stock might have plateaued, and the average forecast of $314.56 constitutes a 7.16% downside.

At press time, the highest 12-month price target for WING stands at $355 – 4.77% above the latest close – and the lowest at $233 – a 31.23% downside. 

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