Monday, January 14, 2008

Wet Seal (NASDAQ:WTSLA): Piper Jaffray adding to Alpha List

- Piper Jaffray is adding Wet Seal (NASDAQ:WTSLA) to their Alpha List with a $4 target. Firm notes that following the company's early-October appointment of a new CEO/CFO team and mid-November analyst day, they think this week's ICR Xchange conference presents the first public forum for new management, with now three and a half months under their belt, to detail more aggressive top-line growth and cost reduction initiatives. On balance, they think lack of credibility surrounding guidance and limited visibility into internal costs put pressure on WTSLA shares during 2007. Firm expects new management to maintain a posture of providing necessary granularity to the Street, in an effort to establish and maintain an improved sense of confidence in underlying growth potential.

PJ maintains a high degree of confidence in the leadership of Ed Thomas, having observed the successful operations he has established at prior posts.

Notablecalls: This is beautiful stuff from PJ's Jeffrey Klinefelter. I expect to see a nice from WTSLA today and over the coming days. Note that PJ has also added DECK to their Alpha List.

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