Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: American Water, Baker Hughes, Chipotle, Cree, Electronic Arts, SAP, Snap, AK Steel and More

April 26, 2017 by Jon C. Ogg

Stocks were indicated up marginally ahead of the proposed Trump tax plan, but this is already after two days of major rallying in which the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose about 450 points over just two days. The bull market is now more than eight years old, but the prevailing trend that just won’t seem to go away is that investors have found reason after reason to step in and buy the market sell-offs. Those same investors are also still looking for new trading and investing ideas.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week in an effort to find new ideas for our readers. Some of the key analyst reports cover stocks to buy, and other reports cover stocks to sell or to avoid. Color has been added on many of the following calls, and the consensus analyst price targets referenced are from Thomson Reuters.

These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls on Wednesday, April 26, 2017.

American Water Works Co. Inc. (NYSE: AWK) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Robert W. Baird. It closed up 0.25% at $80.97, and it has a 52-week trading range of $69.41 to $85.24. The consensus analyst target price is $82.09.

Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform with a $65 price target at BMO Capital Markets. Shares previously closed up 1.1% at $59.29, and the 52-week range is $41.74 to $68.59. The consensus price target is $69.35.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG) managed to beat earnings and show strong post-recovery sales, but it also had a data breach. After rising 0.6% to $471.76 ahead of earnings, it was indicated up 1.5% at $479.00 on Wednesday. Chipotle was downgraded to Sector Perform from Outperform and the price target was raised to $500 from $465 at RBC Capital Markets. Maxim has a Hold rating, and it raised its target price to $440 from $430.

Cree Inc. (NASDAQ: CREE) was downgraded to Neutral from Overweight with a $25 price target at JPMorgan. While the prior closing price was $24.82, Cree was indicated down almost 8% at $22.85 after earnings and on a Chinese joint venture.

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $112 price target (versus a $92.99 closing price) at Pacific Crest. Electronic Arts has a 52-week range of $61.10 to $93.40, and the consensus analyst target was last seen at $95.06.

SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) was downgraded to Sell from Hold at Stifel. Its American depositary shares closed up 0.7% at $102.13 on Tuesday and were indicated down 0.1% at $102.13 on Wednesday. The 52-week range is $71.39 to $102.26, and the consensus price target is down at $94.94.

Snap Inc. (NYSE: SNAP) was started as Market Perform at Raymond James. Snap closed up 0.66% at $21.34 on Tuesday and was indicated up 0.3% at $21.40 on Monday, and it has a consensus target price of $23.48 and a post-IPO range of $18.90 to $29.44.

Other key analyst calls were seen in shares of the following:

Activision Blizzard Inc. (NASDAQ: ATVI) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $60 price target (versus a $51.36 close) at Pacific Crest.

AK Steel Holding Corp. (NYSE: AKS) was reiterated as Buy with a $9 price target (versus a $6.50 close) at Jefferies, noting that disappointing guidance after earnings is still a buying opportunity.

Allegiant Travel Co. (NASDAQ: ALGT) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Merrill Lynch.

Callon Petroleum Co. (NYSE: CPE) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $16 price target (versus a $12.24 prior close) at Barclays.

Conn’s Inc. (NASDAQ: CONN) was raised to Overweight from Hold with a $22 price target at KeyBanc Capital Markets.

CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT) was raised to Buy from Neutral at Merrill Lynch. The firm’s $54 price objective compared to a $45.02 closing price.

Dynegy Inc. (NYSE: DYN) was raised to Hold from Sell at Deutsche Bank, after putting in a new 52-week low of $6.14 and closing down 1.75% at $6.19 on Tuesday. Dynegy’s 52-week range is now $6.14 to $22.01.

Flagstar Bancorp Inc. (NYSE: FBC) was raised to Outperform from Neutral with a $35 price target (versus a $29.25 close) at Wedbush Securities.

Fusion Telecommunications International Inc. (NASDAQ: FSNN) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $3 price target (versus a $1.43 close) at B. Riley. The 52-week range is $0.96 to $2.46.

Illumina Inc. (NASDAQ: ILM) was reiterated as Sell with a $125 fair value estimate (versus a $181.50 close) at Janney. The firm noted that full year visibility remains weak and that guidance implies the steepest revenue acceleration since 2010.

RSP Permian Inc. (NASDAQ: RSPP) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $44 price target (versus a $38.69 close) at Barclays.

U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. (NYSE: SLCA) was maintained as Buy as the price target was cut to $65 from $70 (versus a $42.54 close) at Jefferies.

While Monday and Tuesday saw two serious rallying days in the stock market, there were five major analyst downgrades and negative analyst calls that looked too large to ignore.

Tuesday’s top analyst calls were in Amazon, American Express, Best Buy, General Electric, JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, Conagra and about a dozen more.