Stocks were indicated higher on Wednesday morning ahead of the September Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) decision on interest rates. Even after last week’s selling and more market volatility returning, it is obvious that investors will still buy stocks after any real weakness. Those same investors also want to find new ideas to generate income or gains ahead.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each morning of the week in an effort to find new investing and trading ideas. Some analyst research reports cover stocks to buy, and some feature stocks to sell or avoid.
These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Wednesday morning:
Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO) was started as Hold at Jefferies with a $70 price target. It closed most recently at $62.97, and the firm expects more near-term pressure than usual. The stock has a 52-week trading range of $53.68 to $70.15 and a consensus analyst price target of $69.11.
Barclays PLC (NYSE: BCS) was raised to Buy from Hold at HSBC. It closed in New York trading at $8.62, with a 52-week range of $6.76 to $15.86 and a consensus price target of $9.85.
E*Trade Financial Corp. (NASDAQ: ETFC) was started with an Outperform rating and assigned a $33 price target (versus a $28.19 prior close) at Credit Suisse. The 52-week range is $19.61 to $30.98, and the consensus price target is $29.77.
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE: PBR), or Petrobras, was raised to Market Perform from Underperform at Raymond James. Shares closed at $9.22, in a 52-week range of $2.71 to $10.24. The consensus price target is $7.16.
Range Resources Corp. (NYSE: RRC) was started with an Outperform rating and assigned a $49 price target (versus a $36.58 close) at Credit Suisse. Its 52-week range is $19.21 to $46.96, and it has a consensus price target of $48.76.
Vale S.A. (NYSE: VALE) was raised to Equal Weight from Underweight with a $4 price target (versus a $5.11 close) at Barclays. The 52-week range is $2.13 to $6.26. The consensus price target is $5.40.
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Other key analyst upgrades and downgrades were seen as follows:
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