Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Alcoa, Alphabet, BP, Epizyme, FirstEnergy, First Solar, KeyCorp, Nvidia, Vale and More

Stocks had been selling off up until today, but the major equity indices were up after strong earnings from the Dow Jones industrials added support. Some investors have reconsidered what the nine-year bull market may bring in 2018 and beyond. It is clear that the trend of buying pullbacks has become more vulnerable to sellers, volatility and each major news headline. Many investors are finding it hard to decide how they want their assets positioned for the longer term.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is to find new ideas for investors and traders alike. Some analyst reports cover stocks to buy and some 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 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, April 24, 2018.

Alcoa Inc. (NYSE: AA) was down 13.5% at $51.90 on Monday after the United States softened its Rusal sanctions. Citigroup downgraded Alcoa to Neutral from Buy. The stock had a consensus target price of $67.25.

Allergan PLC (NYSE: AGN) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $220 price target (versus a $159.89 prior close) at Citigroup.

Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) was down 0.3% ahead of earnings at $1,073.81 and was last seen down just 0.2% at $1,071 or so on Tuesday morning after the report. Pivotal Research maintained Alphabet as Hold but cut its price target to $970 from $1,040. Credit Suisse maintained its Outperform rating with a $1,350 price target. Merrill Lynch maintained its Buy rating but lowered its price objective to $1,270 from $1,360.

Avangrid Inc. (NYSE: AGR) was maintained as Buy with a $55 fair value (versus a $51.07 close) at Janney. Merrill Lynch maintained it as Buy with a $54 price objective.

BP PLC (NYSE: BP) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $54 price target (versus a $43.91 close) at Goldman Sachs. BP’s American depositary shares were up almost 1% at $43.91 on Monday, and they were up 1.3% at $44.49 on Tuesday. The consensus price target is roughly $45.20, and the 52-week range is $33.90 to $44.62.

Epizyme Inc. (NASDAQ: EPZM) was maintained as Outperform but the price target was cut to $20 from $24 (versus a $15.30 close) at Wedbush. The firm believes that the secondary malignancy causing a partial hold looks to be a one-off event and the long-term thesis remains intact. Shares were down 3.5% on Monday and indicated down 12.4% at $13.40 on Tuesday.

First Data Corp. (NYSE: FDC) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $19 price target (versus a $15.14 close) at Mizuho.

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