Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Arch Coal, Editas, FireEye, Generac, NextEra, Under Armour and More

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Stocks were looking for direction on Thursday. After a debt ceiling deal was reached on Wednesday, the European Central Bank kept rates flat and maintained an outlook of lower rates for an extended period. Investors have to keep in mind that the major stock indexes still remain close to all-time highs, and they also have to consider that investors keep finding new reasons to buy stocks after every sell-off. Many of those same investors are also looking for new investing and trading ideas to generate gains and income.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is to find new investing and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the top analyst reports cover stocks to buy, while some are reiterations of ratings with target changes. And some of these calls even cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Additional color and commentary has been added on most of the daily analyst calls. Consensus analyst price target data are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service.

These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Thursday, September 7, 2017.

Arch Coal Inc. (NYSE: ARCH) was started as Neutral with an $84 price target (after closing up 2% at $78.22) at Macquarie. The stock has a 52-week range for closing prices of about $61.70 to $84.79, and it has a consensus analyst price target of $97.57.

Editas Medicine Inc. (NASDAQ: EDIT) was started as Overweight with a $28 price target (versus a $19.69 prior close) at Barclays. It has a 52-week range of $12.43 to $29.20 and a consensus price target of $35.25. Editas is still up about $1 from its earnings report in August, but it was up above $23 briefly after that earnings report.

FireEye Inc. (NASDAQ: FEYE) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight with a $19 price target (versus a $14.78 close) at Morgan Stanley. The 52-week range is $10.35 to $16.40 and the consensus price target is $16.41.

Generac Holdings Inc. (NYSE: GNRC) was raised to Neutral from Underperform with a $45 price objective (after closing up 3.6% at $43.59) at Merrill Lynch, with the firm noting that an inability to predict weather demand after a weaker power outage impact on Houston was why it has that rating. Shares were last indicated up 1% at $44.00, in a 52-week range of $33.77 to $44.84 and with a consensus analyst target of $40.33.

NextEra Energy Inc. (NYSE: NEE) was started as Overweight and assigned a $173 price target (versus a $148.25 close) at JPMorgan. NextEra has a 52-week range of $110.49 to $151.30 and a consensus price target of $154.08.

Under Armour Inc. (NYSE: UAA) was reiterated as Buy with a $28 target price (versus a $16.76 close) at Jefferies. On top of being well positioned in a challenging North American backdrop, the firm feels that its strategic goals prioritize increased diversification, optimized distribution and streamlined corporate infrastructure enough for the brand to have a sound plan for outpacing industry growth.

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Other key analyst calls were seen in the following: