Stocks were indicated to open marginally lower on Monday ahead of the Great American Eclipse, but investors need to keep in mind that the markets are still very close to all-time highs. The one trend that has prevailed in the stock market for more than half of the eight-year bull market is investors keep finding new reasons to buy stocks after every single sell-off. Those same investors are also searching for new investing ideas and trading ideas.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week to find new investing ideas and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the top analyst reports cover stocks to buy, but some calls cover stocks to sell or stocks to avoid.
Additional color and commentary has also 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 Monday, August 21, 2017.
Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) was reiterated as Buy and the price target was raised to $52 (versus $44.30 close) at Argus on the heels of last week’s strong earnings report. Applied Materials has a 52-week range of $27.56 to $47.86 and has a consensus analyst target price of $55.02.
Baker Hughes, a GE Company (NYSE: BHGE), was started with a Buy rating and was given a $43 price target (versus $32.77 close) at Argus. Baker Hughes has a 52-week range of $32.43 to $57.73 and has a consensus analyst target of $50.91.
Blue Apron Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: APRN) was assumed in coverage and reiterated as Perform at Oppenheimer. The company holds balanced views toward Blue Apron’s prospects. The firm sees execution challenges, planned investments, a pullback on marketing, and competitive pressures weighing on top-line growth and bottom-line delivery. Longer term, Oppenheimer still sees value in the Blue Apron brand and its ability to monetize a large and growing customer base.
Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE) was maintained as Outperform at Credit Suisse, but the firm lowered its price target to $148 from $151. BofA Merrill Lynch maintained a Neutral rating, but the price objective was cut to $130 from $145. Deere closed down 5.4% at $117.31 on Friday after earnings, versus a 52-week range of $80.35 to $132.50.
Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE: FL) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform with a $37 price target (versus $34.38 close) at Robert W. Baird. Foot Locker shares were down 27.9% on Friday after earnings, and the new 52-week range is $34.29 to $79.43. The old consensus target price was $54.16, but that will be coming down as more analyst targets get cut.
Lululemon Athletica Inc. (NASDAQ: LULU) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $70 price objective (versus $58.13 close) at BofA Merrill Lynch. The firm sees sustained comparable rebound starting and it sees an earnings multiple expansion. Lululemon has a 52-week range of $47.26 to $81.81, and its consensus analyst target price was $61.24.
Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) was downgraded to Hold from Buy and the price target was cut to $60 from $75 (versus $57.46 close) at Jefferies. Nike has a 52-week range of $49.01 to $60.53 and it had a consensus analyst target price of $62.18. Nike shares were indicated down 1.3% at $54.25 after the call.
Plains All American Pipeline, L.P. (NYSE: PAA) was raised to Buy from Hold with a $23 price target (versus $19.01 close) at Jefferies. Plains All American took down the whole MLP sector after its poor earnings report and its unexpected distribution cut. Plains All American has a 52-week range of $18.82 to $33.95 and the prior consensus analyst target price of $25.26.
TOTAL S.A. (NYSE: TOT) was downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays. TOTAL’s ADSs closed at $50.49 on Friday and shares were indicated down 0.4% at $50.30 on Monday, versus a 52-week range of $45.05 to $54.71.
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Monday’s other top analyst upgrades and downgrades were seen as follows:
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