Stocks were indicated to open lower on Thursday, a day after the Nasdaq regained lost footing when the Dow and S&P 500 turned in mixed results. This bull market is now well over eight years old, but equity investors have proven time after time that they want to and will buy any major pullback or sell-off in stocks. Investors also continue to search for new investing and trading ideas.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is 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 are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service. Additional color and commentary also has been added on most of the daily analyst calls.
These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Thursday, July 6, 2017.
AutoZone Inc. (NYSE: AZO) was downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight with a $540 price target (versus a $516.83 prior close) at Morgan Stanley. Shares were down 9.6% on Wednesday, and they hit a 52-week low of $514.47. AutoZone’s 52-week high is $819.54, and it had a consensus analyst target price of $736.82.
CECO Environmental Corp. (NASDAQ: CECE) was raised to Strong Buy with a $13 price target (versus a $9.51 close) at Needham.
Immunogen Inc. (NASDAQ: IMGN) was raised to Outperform from Sector Perform with a $12 price target (versus a $7.30 close) at RBC Capital Markets.
Logitech International S.A. (NASDAQ: LOGI) was started with a Buy rating and given a $44 price target (versus a $36.92 close) at Citigroup.
Medtronic PLC (NYSE: MDT) was started as Outperform at William Blair. Medtronic closed at $88.90, and it has a 52-week trading range of $69.35 to $89.72. The consensus target price is $92.15.
Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) was started as Outperform with a $71 price target (versus a $57.56 close) at Raymond James. Nike has a 52-week range of $49.01 to $60.33 and a consensus target price of $61.04.
Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE: NSC) was downgraded to Sector Perform from Outperform at Scotia Capital.
OncoSec Medical Inc. (NASDAQ: ONCS) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $5 price target (versus a $1.16 close) at Dawson James. This is a tiny company with a $24 million market cap, and it has a 52-week range of $0.88 to $2.08.
O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (NASDAQ: ORLY) shares closed down almost 19%, with a $41.64 drop, to $178.77 after weaker sales and warning of weaker sales. The stock was downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight with a $200 price target at Morgan Stanley. It also was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform with a $195 price target at Credit Suisse. Its new 52-week range is $173.89 to $292.84, and its old consensus target price was $270.14.
Patterson Companies Inc. (NASDAQ: PDCO) was downgraded to Sell from Hold with a $39 price target (versus a $47.43 close) at Stifel.
Roche Holding was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at UBS. Roche’s OTC-listed American depositary shares closed at $31.76 on Wednesday.
Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB) was raised to Outperform from Market Perform with an $80 price target (versus a $65.74 close, after falling another 1.8%) at Bernstein. Schlumberger is still very close to a 52-week low of $65.10, and it has a 52-week high of $87.84. This valuation call suggests that the market has already been bracing for the worst case, and the prior consensus price target was still up at $86.14.
Weatherford International Ltd. (NYSE: WFT) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform with a $5 price target (versus a $3.95 close) at Bernstein.
The top 11 analyst calls from June were calling for 100% to 400% upside over the next year. Also, Merrill Lynch has released its top thematic momentum and chart picks for the third quarter of 2017 with well above-consensus price targets on eight top large companies. Also, Jefferies sees five retail plays being mostly immune to Amazon’s endless e-commerce expansion.
Wednesday’s top analyst calls included BHP Billiton, Capital One, Chemours, Constellation Brands, Novartis, Teradyne and Weyerhaeuser.