Investing

Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Abbott Labs, Delphi, Lululemon, Netflix, Nordstrom, Sirius XM, Disney, Windstream and More

courtesy of Jon Ogg

Stocks hit all-time highs many times during 2017, and the first day of 2018 was looking to have a strong open. With the raging bull market now nearing nine years old, the Dow was up 25% and the S&P 500 was up over 19% in 2017. Investors now have to decide how they want to be positioned in 2018 with rising short-term interest rates and what is expected to be accelerated growth on the heels of tax reform. Those same investors are also hunting for new investing and trading ideas to generate gains and income into 2018 and beyond.

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 investors and traders alike. Some daily analyst reports and research reports cover stocks to buy. Others cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Additional color and commentary has been added on most of these daily analyst calls. Consensus analyst price targets mentioned and other valuation metrics are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service.

These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Tuesday, January 2, 2017.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) was raised to Overweight from Neutral and the price target was raised to $65 from $60 at JPMorgan, citing solid fundamentals and organic growth and new product launches. Morgan Stanley raised it to Overweight from Neutral and the price target was raised to $67 from $60, citing a device pipeline bringing accelerated growth along with deal synergies driving earnings. Abbott has a 52-week trading range of $38.34 to $57.77 and has a consensus analyst price target of $61.88.

Delphi Technologies PLC (NYSE: DLPH) was started as Outperform and assigned a $73 price target at BMO Capital Markets. Shares closed at $52.47 on Friday, and the consensus price target is $59.54.

Lululemon Athletica Inc. (NASDAQ: LULU) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with an $88 price target (versus a $78.59 prior close) at Citigroup. Meanwhile, Telsey Advisory raised its target to $92 from $84. Lululemon has a 52-week range of $47.26 to $80.10 and a consensus price target of $75.68.

Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) was raised to Outperform from Neutral and the price target was raised to $220 from $200 at Macquarie. This is a broad realignment of media coverage citing gains ahead for Netflix. The 52-week range is $124.31 to $204.38, and the consensus price target is $215.03.

Nordstrom Inc. (NYSE: JWN) was raised to Neutral from Underweight at JPMorgan and the price target was raised to $50 from $33 at JPMorgan. Citigroup raised its target to $51 from $43 on Nordstom. The stock closed at $47.38 last Friday, and it has a 52-week range of $37.79 to $50.32 and a consensus price target of $42.89.

Sirius XM Holdings (NASDAQ: SIRI) was downgraded to Underweight from Neutral with a $5 price target (versus a $5.36 close) at JPMorgan. The 52-week range is $4.40 to $5.89, and the consensus price target is $5.82.

Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) was raised to Outperform from Neutral and the price target was raised to $125 from $112 (versus a $107.51 close) at Macquarie. The call is bolstered by its capability for distribution ahead in a broad media realigment. Disney has a 52-week range of $96.20 to $116.10 and a consensus analyst target of $112.11.

Windstream Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: WIN) was downgraded to Underweight from Neutral at JPMorgan. It was indicated down 2.7% at $1.80 on Tuesday, after closing down 1.6% at $1.85 on Friday, and it has a 52-week range of $1.73 to $8.35 and a consensus price target of $2.49.

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Other top analyst calls were seen as follows:

Allstate Corp. (NYSE: ALL) was downgraded to Underperform from Market Perform and the target price was cut to $93 from $103 at Keefe Bruyette & Woods.

American Electric Power Co. Inc. (NYSE: AEP) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral with a $64 price target (versus a $73.57 close) at Guggenheim.

AMC Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: AMCX) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie.

American Water Works Co. Inc. (NYSE: AWK) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $95 price target (versus a $91.49 close) at Guggenheim.

Baxter International Inc. (NYSE: BAX) was raised to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan.

Bemis Co. Inc. (NYSE: BMS) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral with a $52 price target (versus a $47.79 close) at Merrill Lynch.

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: BCRX) was raised to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital Markets.

CBS Corp. (NYSE: CBS) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie.

Consolidated Edison Inc. (NYSE: ED) was maintained as Hold at Argus, noting that it has a solid dividend yield.

CURO Group Holdings Corp. (NYSE: CURO) was started as Outperform and assigned a $21 price target at Credit Suisse. The firm sees CURO as a scale business with growth potential and attractive valuation. Jefferies started it as Buy with a $19 target. Shares closed at $14.08 ahead of these calls.

Deckers Outdoor Corp. (NYSE: DECK) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies.

Denali Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: DNLI) was started as Overweight with a $25 price target (versus a $15.64 close) at Morgan Stanley.

Discovery Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: DISCA) was raised to Outperform from Neutral at Macquarie.

Duke Energy Corp. (NYSE: DUK) was maintained as Hold at Argus, noting that its 4.1% yield may attract income oriented investors.

Dunkin Brands Group Inc. (NASDAQ: DNKN) was reiterated as Buy and the price target was raised to $71 from $64 at Maxim Group.

Integra LifeSciences Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ: IART) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $53 price objective (versus a $47.86 close) at Merrill Lynch.

Illumina Inc. (NASDAQ: ILMN) was raised to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo.

Incyte Corp. (NASDAQ: INCY) was raised to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital Markets.‍​

Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (NYSE: IPG) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) was downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan.

Jones Energy Inc. (NYSE: JONE) was downgraded to Hold from Buy with a $1 price target (versus a $1.10 close) at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.

KB Home (NYSE: KBH) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral with a $27 price target (versus a $31.95 close) at Citigroup.

Lennar Corp. (NYSE: LEN) was raised to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo, citing tax reform adding a boost and citing benefits from an acquisition.


Macy’s Inc. (NYSE: M) has seen two target price hikes, but both are under the current share price: Citigroup to $20 from $16, and JPMorgan to $21 from $20.

Nielsen Holdings PLC (NYSE: NLSN) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie.

Northwest Natural Gas Co. (NYSE: NWN) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral with a $52 price target (versus a $59.65 close) at Guggenheim.

Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Macquarie.

PG&E Corp. (NYSE: PCG) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $50 price target (versus a $44.83 close) at Goldman Sachs.

Planet Fitness Inc. (NYSE: PLNT) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies.

Regal Entertainment Group (NYSE: RGC) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $23 price target (versus a $23.01 close) at B. Riley.

Silgan Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: SLGN) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Merrill Lynch.

Smart Sand Inc. (NASDAQ: SND) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Janney.

Stryker Corp. (NYSE: SYK) was raised to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan, and Wells Fargo raised its target to $174 from $166.

Urban Outfitters Inc. (NASDAQ: URBN) saw two price hikes: Citigroup to $35 from $28, and Telsey Advisory to $38 from $35.

Vectren Corp. (NYSE: VVC) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $68 price target (versus a $65.02 close) at Guggenheim.

Washington Real Estate Investment Trust (NYSE: WRE) was downgraded to Sell from Hold and the price target was cut to $28 from $33 at Stifel.

XPO Logistics Inc. (NYSE: XPO) was reiterated as Buy and the price target was raised to $120 from $80 at Stifel.

Credit Suisse’s U.S. equity strategy team reaffirmed its S&P 500 EPS target of $155 and the index target of 3,000 for 2018.

Friday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades included American Water Works, J.B. Hunt, Ford, General Motors, AstraZeneca and more.

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