Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Altaba, Cypress Semi, Dollar Tree, Expedia, GM, HCA, Humana, Marathon, Qualcomm, XPO and More

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Stocks were indicated to open marginally higher on all major equity indexes on Wednesday after the market has struggled to recover after last week’s peak. The bull market is now well over eight years old, and the trend remains firm that equity investors keep finding myriad new reasons to buy any major pullback or sell-off of any size. Those same investors continue to look for new investing and trading ideas for income and gains ahead.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week in an effort to find new investing and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the daily analyst reports cover stocks to buy. Other analyst reports cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

On a relatively bright note, Goldman Sachs has raised its target price for the S&P 500 to 2,400 from 2,300 at year-end based on higher EPS estimates among the market. The firm raised its adjusted EPS estimates to $129 from $123 in 2017 and to $139 from $129 in 2018. Unfortunately, the S&P 500 already hit 2,400.

Consensus analyst price target data are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service. Additional color and commentary has also been added on most of the daily analyst calls. These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Wednesday, June 28, 2017.

Altaba Inc. (NASDAQ: AABA) was started as Overweight with a $65 price target (versus a $53.64 prior close) at JPMorgan. Altaba was indicated up 1.2% at $54.30 on Wednesday, and this is the post-Yahoo investment and holding company that owns stakes in Alibaba, Yahoo Japan and certain intellectual property assets.

Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NASDAQ: CY) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight with an $18 price target (versus a $13.20 close) at Barclays. Cypress Semiconductor was indicated up almost 4% at $13.71 on Wednesday, and it has a 52-week trading range of $9.20 to $14.98 and a consensus analyst price target of $16.00.

Dollar Tree Inc. (NASDAQ: DLTR) was raised to Buy from Hold with an $86 price target (versus a $69.22 close) at Loop Capital. Dollar Tree was indicated up 1.8% at $70.49 on Wednesday morning, and it has a 52-week range of $65.63 to $99.93 and a consensus price target of $90.09.

Expedia Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE) was raised to Buy From Neutral by Citigroup. After closing down 2.7% at $147.89 on Tuesday, it was indicated up 1.4% at $150.00 on Wednesday. Expedia has a 52-week range of $102.22 to $156.39 and a consensus target price of $153.14.

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $40 price target (versus a $34.21 close) at Morgan Stanley. GM also now has a 4.4% dividend yield to add to returns on top of that target, which is actually only 50 cents higher than the consensus target from analysts. GM has 52-week range of $27.52 to $38.55.

HCA Healthcare Inc. (NYSE: HCA) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $100 price target (versus an $86.01 close) at Argus. HCA has a 52-week range of $67.00 to $91.03 and a consensus price target of $95.27.

Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $275 price target (versus a $237.07 close) at Citigroup. Humana has a 52-week range of $150.00 to $241.33 and a consensus price target of $239.78.

Marathon Oil Corp. (NYSE: MRO) was started as Neutral and given a $16 price target (versus an $11.35 close) at Goldman Sachs. Marathon has a 52-week range of $11.31 to $19.28 and a consensus price target of $18.75. While this is a sub-consensus target price, and while it is a Neutral rating, it still represents close to 40% upside if their target comes to pass.

Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform with a price target of $62.50 at Northland Securities. Qualcomm has a 52-week range of $51.05 to $71.62 and a consensus price target of $61.55.

XPO Logistics Inc. (NYSE: XPO) was initiated with a Buy rating and a price objective of $72 at Merrill Lynch. XPO has a 52-week range of $24.02 to $63.30 and has a consensus price target of $64.69.

Blackhawk Network Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: HAWK) was upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform with a price target of $50 at BMO Capital Markets. The stock has a 52-week range of $28.88 to $44.90 and a consensus price target of $44.62.

Tuesday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades included Alibaba, BHP Billiton, Cintas, Monsanto, Schlumberger, Shopify, Hess, Western Digital and about a dozen more.

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