The Dow may have crossed 22,000 for the first time ever, but Thursday’s opening bell was one in which stocks were simply looking for direction. Even with the bull market being eight years old now, the common theme that has persisted and been victorious through all the caution and worrying is that investors keep finding new reasons to buy stocks after every sell-off. Those same investors are also searching for new investing and trading ideas.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week to find new investing and trading ideas for our readers. Some analyst reports cover stocks to buy and some cover stocks to sell or to avoid.
Additional color and commentary has been added on most of the daily analyst calls. Consensus analyst price target data are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service.
These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Thursday, August 3, 2017.
Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) was raised to Neutral from Underweight with a $115 price target (versus a $113.09 prior close) at Atlantic Equities. Caterpillar has a 52-week trading range of $79.93 to $114.90, and it has a consensus analyst target price of $116.53.
Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ: CMCSA) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $46 price target (versus a $40.01 close) at Guggenheim. Comcast has a 52-week range of $30.02 to $42.18 and a consensus target price of $46.01.
Fitbit Inc. (NYSE: FIT) was maintained as Neutral with a $6.50 price target at Wedbush Securities, noting that it was a good quarter but without an indication of holiday demand. Merrill Lynch reiterated its Underperform rating and has a $6 price objective. Fitbit closed down 0.2% ahead of earnings but was last seen up almost 5% at $5.32 on Thursday, in a 52-week range of $4.90 to $17.17 and with a consensus target price of $7.00.
Groupon Inc. (NASDAQ: GRPN) reported a net loss of two cents but had adjusted earnings up at a gain of two cents. Groupon shares closed up 9.3% at $4.23 on Wednesday and were indicated down 1% at $4.19 on Thursday. Credit Suisse reiterated its Neutral rating but raised its target price to $4.40 from $3.50. Wedbush maintained its Neutral rating and raised its $4.25 price target to $4.50, talking up its restructuring progress driving customer growth, higher margins and right-sizing its geographic footprint.
Mattel Inc. (NASDAQ: MAT) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral with an $18 price target (versus a $19.62 close) at D.A. Davidson. Mattel has a 52-week range of $19.16 to $34.24 and a consensus target of $21.67. Mattel is one of our exclusive 11 companies that have lost their narrative.
Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (NASDAQ: TTWO) posted a beat-and-raise quarter, and the 0.7% drop to $79.39 ahead of earnings is now a 12% gain to $89.20 afterward. Jefferies reiterated its Buy rating and raised its target price to $108 from $91 (versus a $79.39 close). Wedbush Securities maintained its Neutral rating kept its 12-month price target of $66. Take-Two has a 52-week range of $40.45 to $82.79 and a consensus target price of $83.12.
Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX) was downgraded to Hold from Buy with a $105 price target (versus a $102.42 close) at Jefferies. Time Warner was said to be showing weaker ad views ahead, and the stock is very close to the firm’s target with the AT&T merger on track to close in the fourth quarter.
Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ: ZNGA) was reiterated as Outperform with a $4.65 price target (versus a $3.62 close) at Wedbush, with the firm noting Zynga is doing a lot of things right, but it still has some concerns about its development pipeline.
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Other key analyst calls were seen in the following: