Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Abercrombie, CME, Costco, DowDuPont, Gap, HCA, Herbalife, Merck, PayPal, Urban Outfitters and More

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HCA Healthcare Inc. (NYSE: HCA) was maintained as Buy and the price target was raised to $156 from $136 (versus a $135.09 close, after a 3.2% drop) at Citigroup.

Herbalife Nutrition Ltd. (NYSE: HLF) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $65 price target (versus a $50.99 close) at Jefferies.

Invesco Ltd. (NYSE: IVZ) was maintained as Buy and the target price was cut to $27 from $30 (versus a $21.14 close, after a 3% drop) at Deutsche Bank.

Legg Mason Inc. (NYSE: LM) was still kept as a Buy rating but its price target was lowered to $38 from $40 (versus a $29.67 close) at Deutsche Bank.

Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE: MRK) was reiterated as Outperform at Credit Suisse, and the firm raised its target price to $81 from $71 (versus $70.45 close, after a 2.6% drop) based on Keytruda and because of multiple options that can drive further upside. The consensus target price is $75.16.

Nasdaq Inc. (NASDAQ: NDAQ) was maintained as Buy but the exchange’s price target was lowered to $97 from $103 (versus an $81.97 close, after a 2.95% drop) at Deutsche Bank.

Nightstar Therapeutics PLC (NASDAQ: NITE) was started with an Overweight rating and assigned a $36 price target (versus a $15.03 closing price) at Cantor Fitzgerald. Its consensus target price is $34.50.

PayPal Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) was maintained as Buy at Nomura/Instinet, which lowered the target price to $103 from $120. PayPal closed down 5.7% at $75.45 on Wednesday, with a consensus target price of $98.56 and in a 52-week trading range of $66.16 to $93.70.

Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) was raised to Buy from Neutral and the price objective was raised to $126 from $120 (versus a $115.46 close) at Merrill Lynch.

Urban Outfitters Inc. (NASDAQ: URBN) was maintained as Neutral but the price target was cut to $35 from $50 at Wedbush. Urban Outfitters closed down 2.3% at $38.95 on Wednesday, and it has a consensus target price of $50.33. The 52-week trading range is $21.76 to $52.50.

U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. (NYSE: SLCA) was downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley.

Due to the market bias changing over the past week and after Wednesday’s big sell-off, 24/7 Wall St. has issued 10 crucial lessons (and warnings) for value stock investors in a down market.

Also, a poll has been generated to predict how high the S&P 500 can rise (or say if it has peaked) before the next bear market.

Wednesday’s top analyst calls included Agilent Technologies, Alibaba, CRISPR Therapeutics, Iridium Communications, McDonald’s, Myriad Genetics, Shake Shack, Take-Two Interactive Software and many more. And Tuesday’s top analyst calls were in Apple, Baker Hughes, Blackbaud, Box, CSX, Intuit, Mylan, Tesla, Vodafone, Walmart and many more.

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