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Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Apple, Alcobra, Deere, GT, J.C. Penney and More

Stocks were weak on Tuesday, but investors keep proving that they will aggressively buy overlooked or oversold stocks when they can. 24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of brokerage firm analyst research reports each morning of the week for new investment and trading ideas for our readers. Some of these analyst reports cover stocks to buy, while others cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

These are this Tuesday’s top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was reinstated as Buy with a $120 price target at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The firm believes that it is entering the iPhone super-cycle and its estimates are much higher than the consensus estimates.

Alcobra Ltd. (NASDAQ: ADHD) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Canaccord Genuity on the heels of negative drug studies, but the big news was that the price target was slashed to $9 from $40 in the call.

Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Merrill Lynch.

GT Advanced Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: GTAT) was suspended from coverage at Canaccord Genuity after the firm’s sudden and unexpected Chapter 11 filing.

J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (NYSE: JCP) was reiterated as Underperform with a $7 price target (versus a $9.44 close) at Credit Suisse, and the call is ahead of the October 8 analyst day with the focus being on cost cutting.

Other Key Analyst Calls

Aratana Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: PETX) was started as Overweight with a $17 price target at Piper Jaffray.

BioMed Realty Trust Inc. (NYSE: BMR) was started as Buy with a price target of $23 at Mizuho.

CBOE Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: CBOE) was started as Neutral with a price target of $55 at Citigroup.

Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Merrill Lynch.

Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. (NASDAQ: DNKN) was downgraded to Hold from Buy and the price target was cut to $47 from $50 at Jefferies.

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) was maintained Neutral but its price target was raised to $40 from $35 at Mizuho.

Hibbett Sports Inc. (NASDAQ: HIBB) was started as Neutral with a price target of $45 at Goldman Sachs. Merrill Lynch downgraded it to Neutral from Buy.

International Paper Co. (NYSE: IP) was raised to Buy from Neutral and the price target was raised to $55 from $53 at Merrill Lynch.

ALSO READ: 8 Analyst Stocks Trading Under $10 With Major Upside Calls

Leidos Holdings Inc. (NYSE: LDOS) was raised to Neutral from Underperform and the price target was raised to $35 from $30 (versus a $34.95 close) at Credit Suisse.

MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) was raised to Buy from Hold with a $30 price target at Deutsche Bank.

Noodles & Co. (NASDAQ: NDLS) was raised to Buy with a $24 price target at Jefferies.

Novavax Inc. (NASDAQ: NVAX) was started as Overweight with a price target of $7 at J.P. Morgan.

Rewalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ: RWLK) saw its quiet period end. Barclays started it as Equal Weight with a price target of $28, and it was started as Hold with a price target of $26 at Canaccord Genuity. Jefferies started the exoskeleton maker at Buy with a $39 price target.

Rock-Tenn Co. (NYSE: RKT) was raised to Buy from Neutral and the price target was raised to $56 from $54 at Merrill Lynch.

Regions Financial Corp. (NYSE: RF) was started as Outperform and given a $12 price target (versus a $9.98 close) at Bernstein.

UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE: UNH) was started as Overweight with a $121 price target at Piper Jaffray.

VeriFone Systems Inc. (NYSE: PAY) was started as Outperform with a price target of $39 (versus a $33.95 close) at Pacific Crest.

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Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: VRTX) was maintained as Hold at Argus, with the firm noting specifically that the shares are fully valued ahead of the 28th Annual North American Cystic Fibrosis Conference.

WellCare Health Plans Inc. (NYSE: WCG) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $72 price target (versus a $57.29 close) at Sterne Agee.

In case you missed Monday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades, they were in Bank of Ireland, Buffalo Wild Wings, Celgene, FedEx, Intuitive Surgical, Meritage Homes, Mobileye, SanDisk, Splunk and many more.

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