Stocks have been more volatile in recent trading days around trade and other data, but the major indexes were indicated to have a marginally higher open on Thursday, after hitting all-time highs last week. Investors are starting to see upside targets issued for 2020, but many pressing issues and risks remain now that the bull market is over 10 and a half years old. This is a time for investors to consider what changes they should be making to portfolios and assets 2019 winds down and 2020 approaches.
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, while other 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 calls. The consensus analyst price targets and other valuation metrics are from the Refinitiv sell-side research service.
These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations for Thursday, December 5, 2019.
Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) was raised to Buy from Hold and the target price was raised to $1,525 from $1,325 (versus a $1,318.94 prior close) at Stifel. Alphabet’s prior consensus target price was $1,463.94.
At Home Group Inc. (NYSE: HOME) was up 4% at $8.55 on Wednesday, but its shares were last seen down 40% at $5.10 after guidance was slashed with tariff headwinds. KeyBanc Capital Markets kept its Overweight rating but cut the price target to $10 from $14. Merrill Lynch maintained it as Neutral and cut the price objective to $4.75 from $5.50. William Blair downgraded the shares to Market Perform from Outperform after the news.
Chewy Inc. (NYSE: CHWY) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight with a $30 target price (versus a $22.89 close) at Morgan Stanley.
Discover Financial (NYSE: DFS) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Nomura/Instinet.
Enlink Midstream LLC (NYSE: ENLC) was raised to Outperform from Neutral with a $6 target price (versus a $4.42 close) at Robert W. Baird.
Etsy Inc. (NASDAQ: ETSY) was downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley. Its shares traded down 5.3% at $39.90 early Thursday.
F5 Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV) was downgraded to Underperform from Buy and its price objective was lowered to $140 from $185 (versus a $143.58 close) at Merrill Lynch. The stock was indicated down 3% at $139.20, and its consensus target price was $163.21.
Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) was raised to Buy from Hold with a $240 price target (versus a $198.71 close) at Stifel, but HSBC started coverage at Reduce with a $178 target price. Facebook’s prior consensus target price was $238.77.
Federated Investors Inc. (NYSE: FII) was started as Outperform at Evercore ISI.
Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. (NYSE: HIG) was downgraded to Sector Perform from Outperform at RBC Capital Markets.
Hess Corp. (NYSE: HES) was started as Market Perform at Cowen.
Instructure Inc. (NYSE: INST) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Citigroup.
Mastercard Inc. (NYSE: MA) was started with a Buy rating at Compass Point.
Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $112 price target (versus a $93.72 close) at Goldman Sachs.
PayPal Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) was started with a Buy rating and a $120 target price (versus a $105.00 close) at Compass Point.
Plantronics Inc. (NYSE: PLT) was started as Neutral at JPMorgan.