Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Amarin, Amex, Barrick Gold, Cameco, Groupon, ImmunoGen, JPMorgan, Whole Foods and More

Stocks were indicated to open marginally higher on Thursday after a solid rally on Wednesday. Even though this bull market is well over eight years old, equity investors keep finding myriad new reasons to buy any major pullback or sell-off. Investors are also continuing to search for new investing and trading ideas.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week in an effort to find new investing and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the daily analyst reports cover stocks to buy. Other reports cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Consensus analyst price target data come from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service. Additional color and commentary has been added on most of the daily analyst calls.

These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Thursday, June 29, 2017.

Amarin Corp. PLC (NASDAQ: AMRN) was assumed with a Buy rating and given a $7 price target (versus a $3.49 prior closing price) at Jefferies. The firm noted a favorable risk/reward into transformative Vascepa REDUCE-IT CVOT data in mid-2018. The firm noted that Vascepa sales continue to grow, but REDUCE-IT in mixed dyslipidemia is nearing completion. The firm assigned a 55% probability REDUCE-IT is positive and it now models $1.3 billion in peak-adjusted sales. The firm sees a floor of about $2 if it is negative and sees upside to $17 per share over the long-term if it is positive.

American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP) was started with a Neutral rating and given an $80 price target (versus an $83.97 close) at Instinet. Credit Suisse maintained its Underperform rating on the stock, which has a 52-week trading range of $58.25 to $84.27.

Aspen Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: AZPN) was started as Neutral with a $59 price target (versus a $55.93 close) at Wedbush Securities.

Barrick Gold Corp. (NYSE: ABX) was raised to Hold from Sell with a $16.40 price target (versus a $16.13 close) at Berenberg. The 52-week range is $13.81 to $23.47.

Cameco Corp. (NYSE: CCJ) was started with an Outperform rating and given a $16 price target (versus a $9.53 close) at RBC Capital Markets. Cameco has a 52-week range of $7.41 to $13.36 and a consensus analyst target price of $12.33.

Groupon Inc. (NASDAQ: GRPN) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $5.50 price target (versus a $3.44 close) at B. Riley. Its shares were indicated up almost 4% at $3.57 on Thursday, in a 52-week range of $2.90 to $5.95. Groupon had a consensus target price of $4.16.

ImmunoGen Inc. (NASDAQ: IMGN) was reiterated as Buy and the price target was raised to $9 from $6 (versus a $7.00 close) at Jefferies. The firm believed that investors are becoming more comfortable with the PIII trial design testing Mirve in ovarian cancer, and it noted that management is also pursuing multiple non-dilutive financing options.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) was reiterated as Outperform and the price target was raised to $102 from $99 at Credit Suisse. The firm sees better earnings ahead and higher share buybacks now that JPMorgan has passed its stress test.

Simon Property Group Inc. (NYSE: SPG) was maintained as Buy but the price target was cut to $210 from $225 (versus a $163.80 close) at Argus. The firm’s revised target reflects lower funds from operations expectations and investors’ increasingly negative view of mall-based retailers.

Whole Foods Market Inc. (NASDAQ: WFM) was downgraded to Perform from Outperform and the $45 price target was removed at Oppenheimer. The firm believes that Amazon’s bid undervalues Whole Foods, but it now sees it being less likely that a new bid will come from a strategic player and that private money likely will not attempt to outbid Amazon.

25 great American companies have dividend yields north of 3.5%, and these are not even in real estate investment trusts. This is a full 1.0% higher than the average Dow and S&P 500 dividend, and it is also 100 points higher than a blend of long-term Treasury bonds.

Wednesday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades included Altaba, Cypress Semiconductor, Dollar Tree, Expedia, General Motors, HCA, Humana, Marathon Oil, Qualcomm, XPO and more.

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