The Dow blew through 23,000 for the first time during the week of October 20, 2017, and it was coincidentally 30 years to the day after the 1987 stock market crash. Stronger post-hurricane economic numbers, stronger earnings, a likely budget passage and probable tax cuts were all driving forces this past week. With the bull market over eight and a half years old, some investors might be thinking it’s time to bail or that the elusive huge correction may come up. Other investors continue to search for new ideas to generate gains and income ahead, since the market keeps finding new reasons to buy stocks after every major sell-off.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is to find some of those new investing and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the top analyst reports covering stocks to buy come with way above-average upside projections. In some cases these upside targets are for 35%, 50% or even over 100% higher to the listed price targets. During the week of October 20, we tracked more than 10 highly speculative analyst calls for investors who do not shy away from risk.
Consensus analyst price target data and valuation metrics are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service. Additional color has been included on each analyst call so investors don’t blindly chase these analyst calls without doing further research. After all, 24/7 Wall St. wouldn’t want readers thinking we believe in all the analyst calls just because they were printed.
It is important to realize that traditional Buy and Outperform analyst calls from the large bulge bracket firms (Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, Citigroup and the like) generally come with upside of about 8% to 10% for Dow and S&P 500 stocks. Sometimes those big stocks are given 15% upside at the larger firms. That means that projected price targets with upside of 35%, 50% or over 100% are likely far more risky than your traditional stocks.
By the nature of these speculative companies being in biotech, tech, metals, and energy, as well as being small cap stocks, they are already more risky than most investors should probably consider. None of these companies would come anywhere close to passing suitability tests for widows and orphans.
We have seen some efforts to show baskets created around these picks in the past. The good news is that one of the baskets was recently up about 40% since the start of summer on last look. The bad news is that there are many big losers stacked in with the big winners — a hallmark of highly speculative stocks. Investors need to treat any speculative analyst call with at least some caution, and these should only be used as a starting point or a supplement to more in-depth research efforts before deciding to buy or sell any of these stocks.
Here are 10 highly speculative analyst calls made by various Wall Street and boutique firm analysts with huge upside projections made during the week of October 20, 2017.
Carbonite Inc. (NASDAQ: CARB) was started as Market Outperform with a $30 price target at JMP Securities on October 17. This compares with a $22.30 prior closing price, and note that Carbonite was trading at just $22.70 on Friday’s close. The stock has a 52-week trading range of $14.10 to $24.60, and it had a consensus analyst target price of $26.57. JMP sees Carbonite being a disruptor in the small and mid-sized business market for data backup and protection, and the firm even noted that it is valued at a discount to peers.
Eiger BioPharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: EIGR) was started as Buy and assigned a $35 price target at Roth Capital on October 19. The prior closing price was $11.65. Shares were up 1.7% at $11.85 on Thursday morning and trading at $12.80 on Friday’s close. The 52-week range is $6.10 to $14.75, and this actually was not outlandish compared with other aggressive analyst calls in this highly speculative stock. Just be advised that there appears to be pending drug study data set for presentation in the coming days (subject to change), and that means that things could be the same, far better or far worse after that is presented. Eiger’s stock price also has almost doubled since the first time we covered it among highly speculative analyst picks earlier this year.