Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Accenture, Blucora, Carnival, CNOOC, Hormel, Intuit, Lowe's, Tesla, WPX Energy, Zynga and More

Stocks have seen a mixed week after an FOMC rate hike, and the last day of the quarter appeared to be under selling pressure as trouble is back in Italy and the Italian banks. Many investors have had to deal with seeing lower upside from buying on market pullbacks than in prior years. Now the investing community has to consider how to have their investments positioned for the rest of 2018 and into 2019.

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 analyst reports cover stocks to buy, but some of them cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Additional commentary has been added on most of the daily analyst reports, along with trading history. The consensus analyst price targets and other valuation metrics are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service.

These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Friday, September 28, 2018.

Accenture PLC (NYSE: ACN) was reiterated as Buy at Argus, and the independent research firm raised its target price to $200 from $175 (versus a $170.05 prior closing price). The firm noted Accenture is highly conservative in its guidance and that its customers have continued to engage the company to help it in its digital transformation. The stock has a 52-week trading range of $133.66 to $175.64.

Blucora Inc. (NASDAQ: BCOR) was upgraded to Overweight from Neutral and the price target was raised to $45 from $42 (versus a $37.05 close) at JPMorgan. The 52-week range is $19.05 to $40.60, and the consensus target price is $43.33.

Brookfield Renewable Partners L.P. (NYSE: BEP) was started with a Sell rating and assigned a $28 price target (versus a $30.19 close) at Deutsche Bank. Shares were indicated down about 0.65% at $30.00 in the premarket trading session.

Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL) was maintained as Buy but the price target was cut to $76 from $78 (versus a $63.74 close, after a 4.8% drop on earnings) at Stifel. Credit Suisse maintained its Outperform rating, noting that it sees a great buying opportunity on the weakness.

CAI International Inc. (NYSE: CAI) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Wells Fargo.

CNOOC Ltd. (NYSE: CEO) was downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie. The American depositary shares were up 3.1% at $193.08 on Thursday and indicated up 0.7% at $194.50 on Friday’s early trading. The 52-week range is $126.36 to $194.24.

Costamare Inc. (NYSE: CMRE) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Wells Fargo.

Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE: HRL) was started as Neutral and assigned a $41 price target (versus a $38.90 close) at JPMorgan. The consensus target price is $36.58. The 52-week range is $29.75 to $42.29.

Intuit Inc. (NASDAQ: INTU) was reiterated as Outperform and the price target was raised to $250 from $230 (versus a $222.82 close) at Credit Suisse. The firm came away from the investor day more confident in its long-term growth and margin potential. The consensus analyst target is $215.29, and the 52-week high is $229.86.

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