Investing

Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Apple, Exxon, LifeLock, Microsoft, PayPal, Chipotle and More

Jon C. Ogg

Stocks were lower on Wednesday morning as investors are selling more earnings reports. Still, the one trend that has held up for almost four years now is that investors have bought every stock market sell-off when they think there are bargains to be had. 24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst reports each morning to find new trading and investing ideas for its readers. Some analyst calls cover stocks to buy, and others cover stocks to sell or avoid.

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

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) traded lower after earnings as the iPhone number was short of the more bullish estimates. Credit Suisse reiterated its Outperform rating and $145 price target. Oppenheimer reiterated its Outperform rating and $155 price target. Bank of America Merrill Lynch reiterated its Buy rating and its price objective is $142.

Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) was maintained as Buy at Goldman Sachs, but the firm added the oil and gas giant to its prized Conviction Buy List. The firm’s $95 price target compares to an $81.66 close, a consensus analyst price target of about $92.50 and a 52-week trading range of $81.43 to $104.76.

LifeLock Inc. (NYSE: LOCK) lost nearly half of its value on Tuesday after the FTC went back after the company. Shares fell 49% to a new low of $8.15. LifeLock was downgraded to Hold from Buy and the price target was cut to $9.25 from $20 at Wunderlich. It was downgraded to Sector Perform and the target was cut to $11 from $20 at RBC, and it was downgraded to Sector Weight from Overweight at KeyBanc Capital Markets. Merrill Lynch maintained its Buy rating but lowered its price objective to $12, noting that the drop prices in most of the bad news.

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) beat earnings but that giant charge still weighed on investors. Microsoft was reiterated as Outperform with a $55 price target at Credit Suisse. Oppenheimer reiterated its Outperform rating and $50 price target. However, Merrill Lynch reiterated its Underperform rating and $39 price objective.

PayPal Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) was started as Buy with a price target of $47.00 at Citigroup. Barclays started it as Overweight and assigned a $47 price target.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG) was reiterated as Outperform with a $775 price target at Oppenheimer. Credit Suisse reiterated its Outperform rating and raised its target price to $750 from $725. This is after same-store sales were lower than expected in its earnings report.

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Other top analyst upgrades and downgrades seen this Wednesday were in shares of the following: