Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Cheniere, Cisco, Eli Lilly, Intel, Kroger, Nokia, Rite Aid, Roku, Teva, Tyson, Walgreens and More
Stocks have risen in each of the first three days of 2018, hitting new high after new high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose over 25% in 2017 and is now just over 25,000 for the first time. Investors are having to decide how they want to be positioned in 2018. Accelerated economic growth, higher earnings growth, and tax reform are continuing to entice new and existing investors to add more into stocks. And the trend that won for more than five years is to buy the pullbacks.
Investors are 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 to find new ideas for investors and traders alike. Some of the 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 Friday, January 5, 2018.
Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $65 price target (versus a $54.99 prior close) at Stifel. The stock has a 52-week trading range of $40.36 to $56.14 and a consensus analyst price target of $57.56.
Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $46 price objective (versus a $38.99 close) at Merrill Lynch. Cisco has a 52-week range of $29.80 to $39.54 and a consensus price target of $38.85. Shares were indicated up 2.2% at $39.85, which would mark another decade-plus high.
Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE: LLY) was raised to Buy from Hold with a $115 price target (versus an $85.52 close) at Argus. This firm’s research is not in the sell-side consensus because it is independent research without brokers, but it should be noted that Eli Lilly’s sell-side street-high analyst target price is $107. The 52-week trading range is $74.00 to $89.09, and the consensus price target is $92.14.
Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) was raised to Buy from Hold at Jefferies. After closing down 3.1% at $26.98 on Thursday, the stock was indicated up 1.5% at $27.40 on Friday. Kroger has a 52-week range of $19.69 to $34.99 and a consensus price target of $26.91.
Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform with a $5 price target (versus a $4.89 close) at Credit Suisse. The 52-week range is $4.50 to $6.65, and the consensus price target is $6.12. Despite certain licensing deals, Credit Suisse sees limited opportunities for Nokia to grow its revenues ahead.
Rite Aid Corp. (NYSE: RAD) was started as Underperform and assigned a $1.50 price target (versus a $2.08 close) at Evercore ISI. Shares were trading at $1.97 at the end of 2017. The 52-week range is $1.38 to $8.77, and the consensus price target is $2.07.
Roku Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKU) was downgraded to Sell from an already cautious Neutral with a $28 price target at Citigroup. Roku took a similar downgrade from Morgan Stanley on Thursday, sending shares down 7.6% to $51.25. Shares were indicated to open down another 5% at $48.65 on Friday, in a post-IPO range of $15.75 to $58.80.
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA) was downgraded to Underperform from Market Perform with a $17 price target (versus a $19.58 close) at Wells Fargo. The stock closed up 2.35% on Thursday but was indicated down 1.9% at $19.20 on Friday. Teva has a 52-week range of $10.85 to $37.94 and a consensus price target of $18.15.
Tyson Foods Inc. (NYSE: TSN) was started as Overweight and assigned a $94 price target (versus an $83.27 close) at Piper Jaffray. It has a 52-week range of $57.20 to $84.65 and a consensus target price of $83.27. This call is $1 above the prior street-high analyst price target.
Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. (NASDAQ: WBA) was started as Outperform and assigned an $80 price target (versus a $71.60 close) at Evercore ISI. Walgreens has a 52-week range of $63.82 to $89.69 and a consensus analyst target of $85.87.
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Other key analyst calls were seen as follows: