Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Tesla Motors, Kate Spade, Xilinx, Yandex, Cempra and More

The final trading day on what has been a very solid year for investors is upon us, and with the presidential inauguration now just three weeks away, the focus will soon return to market internals and fundamentals. Most Wall Street strategists are reasonably positive on the prospects for 2017, although there is a possibility we could see some rougher seas in the early part of the year like we did last year. The futures traded up this morning, an indication of a move higher in stocks after two days of selling.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each morning to find new trading and investing ideas for its readers. Some analyst calls cover stocks to buy, while others cover stocks to sell or avoid.

These are this Friday’s top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations. Since this is the week between holidays, many of the firms we cover will not resume full coverage until after the new year, so the published volume is again reasonably light.

Aurina Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: AUPH) had its price target lowered at H.C. Wainwright from $10 to $8. The consensus Wall Street price objective is $8.90. The 52-week trading range for the shares is $1.42 to $5.69.

Cempra Inc. (NASDAQ: CEMP) was raised to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley. The 52-week trading range is $2.55 to $30.20. SunTrust reiterated its Sell rating on the stock and lowered its price target to $2 from $5. The consensus price target for the stock, which has been battered over poor FDA rulings, is $13.23. The stock closed yesterday at $2.60, down almost 60% on the day.

China Lodging Group Ltd. (NASDAQ: HTHT) was raised to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank. The 52-week range for the stock is $25.432 to $54.23, and the consensus price target is $48.35. The stock closed above that Thursday at $48.79.

Innocoll Holdings PLC (NASDAQ: INNL) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at FBR, JMP Securities and Janney. The 52-week range is $1.54 for $12.94. The consensus price target is $9.20, and the shares closed Thursday at $1.77.

Kate Spade & Co. (NYSE: KATE) had the price target on the shares raised to $18 from $15 at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey. That compares with a consensus target of $19.27. The 52-week range is $14.02 to $26.46. The analysts cite the likelihood of a takeover near the high end of the range. The shares closed Thursday at $18.49.

Syndax Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: SNDX) was started with a Buy rating at BTIG with a $25 price target. That compares with a consensus price objective of $25.80. The 52-week range is $6.69 to $18.03. The stock closed trading on Thursday at $6.91.

Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) was named the Top Pick for 2017 at Robert W. Baird. The 52-week range is $141.05 to $269.34, and the consensus price target is $236. The shares closed Thursday at $214.68.

Xilinx Inc. (NASDAQ: XLNX) had its price target raised to $70 from $60 at Argus. The consensus price objective is $53.76. The stock closed Thursday at $60.74, in a 52-week trading range of $40.44 to $62.24.

Yandex N.V. (NASDAQ: YNDX) was started at Outperform with a $26 price target at Credit Suisse. That’s versus a consensus price target of $23.72. The 52-week range for the shares is $11 to $23.87. The stock closed yesterday at $20.35.

In case you missed it, Wednesday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades included Biogen, Comerica, Deere, NVIDIA, 21st Century Fox and more.

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