Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Apple, Carnival, Generac, Lyft, Six Flags, Square, Tecnoglass, Yum Brands, Western Digital, Zoetis and More

July 1, 2019 by Jon C. Ogg

The second quarter of 2019 is now over, and the Dow Jones industrial average is up 14% and the S&P 500 is up more than 17% year to date. OPEC and Russia came to some production cut agreements on oil, and Presidents Trump and Xi Jinping have decided to stop new tariffs and resume trade discussions. Stocks were expected to post strong gains on Monday based on the developments and after overseas markets rallied, but investors will want to consider that major equity indexes are still very close to all-time highs. Investors should be considering how they want their portfolios and assets positioned for the second half of 2019 and beyond.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week. Our goal is to find new ideas for traders and long-term investors alike. Some of the daily analyst calls cover stocks to buy. Other analyst calls cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

We have provided these calls in a quick-hit summary for easy reading, and additional comments and trading data have been added on some of the calls. 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 on Monday, July 1, 2019.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was reiterated as Outperform with a $235 price target (versus a $199.74 prior close) at Wedbush Securities, with the firm noting that Apple is a G-20/China winner as trade talks resume and as new tariffs are put on hold. Apple was indicated up 2.5% at $197.92 on Monday, and its consensus target price was $212.03 on last look.

Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL) was downgraded to Hold from Buy and the price target was cut to $48 from $60 at Berenberg.

Generac Holdings Inc. (NYSE: GNRC) was raised to Outperform from Neutral and the target price was raised to $86 from $64 at Robert W. Baird. Shares closed down 0.5% at $69.41 on Friday and have a consensus target price of $67.00 and a 52-week trading range of $45.43 to $70.29.

KB Home (NYSE: KBH) was raised to Neutral from Sell at BTIG. Shares closed up 1.3% at $25.73 on Friday, but that was after larger post-earnings gains on Thursday. The 52-week range is $16.82 to $28.26, and the consensus target price is $27.40.

Lyft Inc. (NASDAQ: LYFT) was started with a Neutral rating at Monness Crespi & Hardt. Shares closed up 0.7% at $65.71 on Friday and were indicated up over 1% at $66.50 with a broad market pop on Monday. The post-IPO range is $47.17 to $88.60.

Six Flags Entertainment Corp. (NYSE: SIX) was raised to Overweight from Sector Weight with a $62 target price (versus a $49.68 close) at KeyBanc Capital Markets. The stock was indicated to open up 1.4% at $50.40 on Monday.

SolarWinds Corp. (NYSE: SWI) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral and the price target was cut to $17.50 from $20 (versus an $18.34 close) at Goldman Sachs.

SM Energy Co. (NYSE: SM) was downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight and the price target was lowered to $13 from $18 (versus a $12.52 close, after a 1.8% gain) at Barclays.

Square Inc. (NYSE: SQ) was reiterated as Neutral with a $75 price target (versus a $71.28 prior close) at Wedbush. The firm’s call is after meetings with the company, and its view is that margin expansion remains elusive while revenues are expected to keep rising handily. The stock has a 52-week range of $49.82 to $101.15, and the consensus target price is $82.66.

Stitch Fix Inc. (NASDAQ: SFIX) was started with a Hold rating at Needham. It closed up 5% at $31.99 on Friday and was indicated up 2% at $32.65 on Monday. The consensus target price is $37.38.

Sun Life Financial Inc. (NYSE: SLF) was reiterated as Buy and the target price was raised to $45 from $42 at Argus. Shares closed up 0.3% at $41.36, in a 52-week range of $31.49 to $41.76. The consensus target price is $45.65.

SVB Financial Group (NASDAQ: SIVB) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Wells Fargo.

Tecnoglass Inc. (NASDAQ: TGLS) was raised to Strong Buy from Outperform with a $10 price target (versus a $6.49 close, after a 5.3% gain) at Raymond James. Shares were indicated up 3% more on Monday, and the prior consensus target price was $10.80.

United Therapeutics Corp. (NASDAQ: UTHR) was raised to Outperform from Neutral with a $101 price target (versus a $78.05) at Credit Suisse.

Webster Financial Corp. (NYSE: WBS) was raised to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley. Shares closed up 6.7% at $47.55 on Friday and were indicated up another 5.5% at $50.20 on Monday. Western Digital has a 52-week range of $33.83 to $80.12, and its consensus analyst target price was $51.60.

Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) was raised to Buy from Neutral at Mizuho.

Yum! Brands Inc. (NYSE: YUM) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral with a $91 price target (versus a $110.67 close) at Longbow Research.

Zoetis Inc. (NYSE: ZTS) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $120 price objective at Merrill Lynch. The stock has a 52-week range of $78.90 to $116.47, and its consensus target price was $113.58.

Zoom Video Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: ZM) was downgraded to Sell from Neutral but the price target was raised to $66 from $53 (versus an $88.79 close, after a 1.6% drop) at Goldman Sachs. The stock was indicated down 3.2% at $85.95 on Monday.

Stifel has five mid-cap energy stock picks that could all rise 100% or more.

Friday’s top analyst calls included Aerojet Rocketdyne, Apple, Baidu, Biogen, Chesapeake Energy, Chipotle Mexican Grill, McDonald’s, Nike, Procter & Gamble, Walgreens Boots Alliance and many more.

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