We have written before how practically all the major firms we cover have a list of top stock picks for their client base. One of the best things that a major investment bank and brokerage can do is to constantly monitor its list and make additions and deletions when warranted. In a research report just released, the equity team at Credit Suisse added 17 new names to their Top Picks list, while 20 stocks were shown the exit. Bear in mind that at many firms, just because a stock is removed from a list of top names, does not necessarily mean that the rating of Buy, Overweight or Outperform is removed.
We screened the 17 new additions, and picked one top stock to buy from each represented sector.
Alkermes PLC (NASDAQ: ALKS) is a top name in health care that many on Wall Street for years have thought to be an acquisition target. The company recently announced the initiation of the second Phase 2 study of ALKS 3831, a novel, oral, broad-spectrum antipsychotic medicine in development for schizophrenia. The randomized, double-blind, active-controlled study will assess ALKS 3831’s efficacy, safety and tolerability in treating schizophrenia in patients with co-occurring alcohol use disorder, compared to olanzapine, an approved and widely used atypical antipsychotic medicine. The Credit Suisse price target for the stock is $57. The Thomson/First Call estimate is at $50.92. Alkermes closed Wednesday at $47.28 a share.
BB&T Corp. (NYSE: BBT) is a top name added in the financial sector. The company is one of the largest financial services holding companies in the United States, with $184.7 billion in assets and market capitalization of $28.9 billion. It operates 1,824 financial centers in 12 states and Washington, D.C., and it offers a full range of consumer and commercial banking, securities brokerage, asset management, mortgage and insurance products and services. Investors are paid a respectable 2.5% dividend. Credit Suisse has a $46.50 target, and the consensus target is $41.56. BB&T closed Wednesday at $38.15.