Stocks were in the middle of their worst December since the Great Depression, but Tuesday’s small recovery was followed by some additional stock gains on Wednesday. The market is hoping that the FOMC raises rates today but delivers a muted guidance for overall rate hikes in 2019. Investors have also seen less upside from buying immediately after the big market sell-offs than in prior years. Now investors have to consider how they want to have their investments and assets positioned for 2019.
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 of these analyst reports cover stocks to buy, while others 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 Wednesday, December 19, 2018.
Alkermes PLC (NASDAQ: ALKS) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral and the price target was slashed to $26 from $49 at Goldman Sachs. Shares closed down 3.4% at $31.82 on Tuesday, in a 52-week range of $31.54 to $71.22.
Analog Devices Inc. (NASDAQ: ADI) was downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley.
ANGI Homeservices Inc. (NASDAQ: ANGI) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $21 target price (versus a $15.65 prior close) at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was maintained as Buy at Jefferies, but the firm lowered its price target to $225 from $265. The firm is positive about its “services” story developing more with higher than expected margin starting with its next report.
Autodesk Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $163 target price (versus a $130.58 close) at Stifel.
Baker Hughes, a GE Company (NYSE: BHGE) was raised to Outperform from Neutral but the price target was lowered to $25 from $33 (versus a $21.22 close) at Credit Suisse.
Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) was reiterated as Overweight and the target price was raised to $401 from $394 (versus a $294.75 close, after a 5.86% drop) at Morgan Stanley.
Bluebird Bio Inc. (NASDAQ: BLUE) was maintained with an Equal Weight rating at Morgan Stanley, but the price target was slashed to $125 from $185 in the call.
Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE: DRI) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $119 price target (versus a $103.85 close) at BTIG.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) was up 1.5% at $185.01 before earnings but was down 8% at $170.30 afterward. It was maintained as Buy at Citigroup, which lowered its target to $225 from $275.
Galapagos N.V. (NASDAQ: GLPG) was started as Overweight with a $130 price target (versus a $97.86 close, after a 3.85% drop) at Cantor Fitzgerald. Its shares were indicated up 1.3% at $99.17 after the positive call.
Hershey Co. (NYSE: HSY) was given a double upgrade to Buy from Underperform at Merrill Lynch, which is looking for better growth in 2019.
IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ: IACI) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $237 price target (versus a $177.10 close) at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.