10 True Stock Winners Rising in a Down Market, Seeing Multiple Upgrades and Price Hikes After Earnings

Jon C. Ogg
Electronic Arts: Up 8.1% this week, up 18.5% YTD

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) shares screamed higher on Wednesday after its third-quarter earnings report, and the stock hit a new high of $131.01 afterward. Its weekly gain was quite strong, even after falling 2.8% to close at $124.53 on Friday. It seems EA has been able to overcome some of the Star Wars fears.

Electronic Arts was reiterated as Outperform and the price target was raised to $143 from $131 at Credit Suisse, and Jefferies reiterated its Buy rating and its target price was raised to $150 from $138. Needham also reiterated its Buy rating and raised its target price to $135 from $130. Benchmark reiterated its Buy rating and raised its target price to $141 from $136. This was covered in more detail, with multiple other firms raising their targets. EA’s 52-week range is now $80.40 to $131.01.

Mastercard: Up 0.1% this week, up 12.7% YTD

Mastercard Inc. (NYSE: MA) may not seem like a great inclusion, as it was up just 0.1% this week, but it is better than the broad market and still up a lot this year. Mastercard saw multiple targets raised: Barclays ($195 from $178), BMO Capital Markets ($205 from $174), Deutsche Bank ($208 from $185), Keefe Bruyette & Woods ($205 from $178) and RBC Capital Markets ($209 from $180).

Mastercard did not escape Friday’s panic, but its drop was just 1.4% to $170.55. Mastercard also has a 52-week range of $105.69 to $177.11, and it’s worth pointing out that the $177.11 high was actually put in on Friday morning before the carnage took down so many gainers.

Qorvo: Up over 18% this week, up over 21% YTD

Qorvo Inc. (NASDAQ: QRVO) did not escape Friday’s sell-off, with a drop of 3.1% to $80.77, but its new 52-week range is $62.68 to $85.24. The company provides radio frequency solutions and technologies for mobile devices, infrastructure and defense and aerospace. Northland Securities raised its rating to Outperform from Market Perform and Instinet raised its rating to Buy from Hold.

Merrill Lynch raised its rating to Neutral from Underperform, and Mizuho maintained its Neutral rating but raised its target to $74 from $70. Needham has a Buy rating and raised its target to $88 from $84. Downen reiterated its Market Perform rating but raised its target to $85 from $78.

One example of a great earnings move and seeing multiple analyst upgrades was Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT). Still, it was not included this weekend because shares ended down 2.4% this week, despite being up by 7.3% so far in 2018. It still scored a dozen or more analyst target hikes along with very positive ratings.

There were five other runners-up in the week scoring multiple analyst upgrades or target price hikes. The market sell-off and some health care fears hit some of them. If the market euphoria resumes, these stocks may all end up being considered stocks that were oversold after good news due to outside events. These were listed as follows:

  • Caterpillar, down 5.7% this week and down 0.06% YTD.
  • Pfizer, down 6.1% this week but up 1.1% YTD.
  • Stryker, down 3.9% this week but up 4.8% YTD.
  • Vertex Pharmaceuticals, down 176% this week but up 10.9% YTD.
  • Visa, down 4.2% this week but up 6% YTD.

A reminder from Warren Buffett will perhaps calm major market fears: Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful.