Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: AK Steel, Apple, Biogen, EA, FitBit, Foot Locker, McDonald's, Pfizer and More

Stocks have proven that they can sell off when they want to again, but the reality is that the markets were barely 2% off of last week’s all-time highs. And strong earnings and strong ADP payrolls were both pushing the markets back up on Wednesday morning. The bull market is now almost nine years old, and investors are looking to position their portfolios for this year and beyond. The trend that has continued to prevail has been for investors to buy on pullbacks, even as interest rates are rising.

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 these analyst reports and research reports cover stocks to buy. Other reports cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Additional color and commentary has been added on most of the daily analyst reports. The 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 Wednesday, January 31, 2018.

Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) was raised to Neutral from Sell with a $212 price target (versus a $187.89 prior close) at Citigroup. Aetna shares were down 3% on Tuesday after the Bezos, Buffett, Dimon health initiative.

AK Steel Holding Corp. (NYSE: AKS) was downgraded to Underperform from Buy at Merrill Lynch, and the price objective was cut to $5.50 from $8.00. AK Steel closed down 13% at $5.49 on Tuesday after earnings, but shares were indicated up 1.5% at $5.56 on Wednesday.

American Airlines Group Inc. (NYSE: AAL) was raised to Outperform from Market Perform with a $62 price target (versus a $52.59 close) at Bernstein.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital Markets, based on lower production expectations for the iPhone X and after government inquiries ahead of the earnings report. Apple shares were indicated down 0.25% at $166.57, after a 0.6% drop to $166.97 on Tuesday. Apple has a 52-week trading range of $127.01 to $180.10 and a consensus analyst target price of $190.95.

Ally Financial Inc. (NYSE: ALLY) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital Markets.

Autoliv Inc. (NYSE: ALV) was raised to Outperform from Market Perform and the price target was raised to $192 from $137 at Robert W. Baird.

Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $410 price target (versus a $352.59 close) at UBS.

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) was reiterated as Outperform and the price target was raised to $143 from $131 at Credit Suisse, with the firm noting the acceleration in the Live Services segment due to the ongoing strength of Ultimate Team for FIFA as well as the benefit of Madden after the addition of a single player campaign. Needham also reiterated its Buy rating and raised its target price to $135 from $130, and Benchmark reiterated its Buy rating and raised its target price to $141 from $136.

Follow @Jonogg on Twitter to receive the daily analyst calls and other market research calls directly on your feed.

Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.