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Bitcoin Miner CleanSpark Shifts to Neutral in JPMorgan’s Ratings

The major Wall Street investment bank JPMorgan has revised its price targets and ratings for several Bitcoin mining stocks, including CleanSpark and Riot Platforms.

The adjustments in ratings were made in response to the recent surge in Bitcoin’s price and the hashrate of the Bitcoin network, coupled with specific news related to each company. This information was detailed in a research report released on Friday and reported on by CoinDesk.

In light of the 12% increase in Bitcoin prices and a 2% rise in the network hashrate since the bank’s last review, JPMorgan has raised the spot BTC price used in its calculations to $44,000, up from the previous $38,000.

Simultaneously, the bank elevated its baseline network hashrate assumption to 485 EH/s, an increase from the previous 475 EH/s established in the last review.

The hashrate of the Bitcoin network has consistently risen throughout 2023, reaching 470 EH/s as of the publication on Monday.

In the revised evaluations, JPMorgan downgraded CleanSpark, trading on Nasdaq under the ticker CLSK, shifting its rating from “overweight” to “neutral.” Additionally, the bank lowered the price target on the stock to $8, down from the earlier assessment of $9.

The rationale behind this decision was explained by noting that CleanSpark shares had experienced a remarkable surge of over 130% in the past month, reaching what the bank deemed a fair valuation.

In contrast, Riot Platforms (RIOT) underwent an upgrade from an “underweight” to a “neutral” rating, accompanied by an increased price target of $12, up from the previous $8.

Meanwhile, JPMorgan maintained its “overweight” rating on Iris Energy (IREN), underscoring its position as the preferred choice in the sector. Additionally, the bank raised its price target for Iris Energy to $9.50, up from the earlier assessment of $9.

JPMorgan optimistic about Bitcoin ETF

In October of this year, an analyst report from JPMorgan, led by Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou, reiterated the expectation that the SEC would likely approve multiple spot Bitcoin ETFs within 2023. The report also issued a cautionary note, suggesting that the SEC might face legal challenges if it were to reject these ETFs.

Panigirtzoglou stated, “We believe that a new legal battle on the issue of spot Bitcoin ETF approval is not something that the SEC would be willing to face again,” underscoring the potential reluctance of the SEC to engage in a legal dispute on this matter.

In earlier assessments, Bloomberg Intelligence analysts Eric Balchunas and James Seyffart expressed a high level of confidence, stating a 90% likelihood of the SEC approving an ETF by January of the following year.

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