Stocks were indicated to open higher after a strong payrolls report on Friday morning. Despite a pullback this week, the markets remain near all-time highs and investors have solid double-digit percentage gains in all three major equity indexes year to date. With the thought of “sell in May and go away” entering the fray after such strong gains, investors need to be considering how they want their portfolios positioned for the rest of the year and beyond.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is to find new trading and investing ideas for our readers. Some of the daily analyst reports cover stocks to buy, but other reports cover stocks to sell or to avoid.
Additional commentary and trading data have been added on some of the daily analyst reports. The consensus analyst price targets and other valuation metrics are from the Refinitiv (Thomson Reuters) sell-side research service.
These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Friday, May 3, 2019.
Achillion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ACHN) was downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight and the price target was lowered to $2.50 from $5.00 at Barclays. The stock closed up 3.4% at $3.01 on Thursday but was indicated down 3.3% at $2.91 on Friday.
American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley. RBC Capital Markets started Amex with a Sector Perform rating. Shares closed up 0.2% at $117.25 on Thursday, with a consensus target price of $121.67 and a 52-week trading range of $89.05 to $117.99.
BCE Inc. (NYSE: BCE) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Citigroup.
Bottomline Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: EPAY) was downgraded to Outperform from Strong Buy and the price target was lowered to $55 from $65 (versus a $50.39 prior close) at Raymond James.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE: BMY) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight and the price target was raised to $55 from $53 at Barclays. JPMorgan also started it with an Overweight rating and $62 price target. The shares closed up 0.6% at $46.88 on Thursday and were indicated up almost 1% at $47.30 on Friday. The prior consensus target price was $57.10, and the 52-week trading range is $44.30 to $63.69.
Celgene Corp. (NASDAQ: CELG) was downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays.
Cogent Communications Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: CCOI) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Deutsche Bank.
Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp. (NASDAQ: CTSH) was down 7.7% at $66.61 on Thursday and was down another 7.7% at $61.50 on Friday after the post-earnings analyst downgrade brigade came out. JPMorgan downgraded it to Underweight from Neutral, and Goldman Sachs downgraded it to Neutral from Buy. KeyBanc Capital Markets cut its rating to Sector Weight from Overweight, and Evercore ISI downgraded shares to In-Line from Outperform. The prior consensus target price was $81.48. The 52-week trading range is $59.47 to $83.35.
Collegium Pharmaceutical Inc. (NASDAQ: COLL) was started with a Buy rating and assigned a $23 price target (versus a $13.90 close) at H.C. Wainwright.
Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) was started coverage with an Outperform rating and assigned a $96 price target (versus an $81.14 close) at RBC Capital Markets.