Investing

Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Adobe, AutoZone, CenturyLink, Cigna, Conn's, Golar LNG, Revolve, Surmodics, UPS and More

The futures traded flat Wednesday morning as the market digests two potential articles of impeachment against the president, and the replacement for NAFTA that was finally agreed upon in the U.S. House of Representatives, although Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says the Senate will not vote on it until 2020.

Investors are seeing more upside calls for 2020 stock market performance, and all those recession calls in recent months were simply nothing more than an error or head fakes. Many pressing issues and risks to consider remain now that the bull market has raged longer than in our lifetimes. Investors should be considering what changes they should make to their portfolios and assets heading into 2020.

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 others 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 price targets mentioned and other valuation metrics are from the Refinitiv sell-side research service.

These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations for Wednesday, December 11, 2019.

AK Steel Holding Corp. (NYSE: AKS) was raised to Neutral from Sell at UBS. The company announced recently it is merging with Cleveland Cliffs, and its shares have a 52-week trading range of $1.66 to $3.47. The consensus price target on Wall Street is $2.42, and the shares closed Tuesday’s trading at $3.41.

Ameren Corp. (NYSE: AEE) was started with an Overweight rating at Morgan Stanley. The stock has traded between $62.51 and $80.85 over the past 52 weeks, and a consensus price target was not available. The shares ended trading Tuesday at $74.59.

Adobe Inc. (NASDAQ: ADBE) saw its price target raised to $350 from $300 at BMO Capital Markets, citing the company introducing its fiscal year 2021 estimates, which include approximately 16% revenue growth. Over the next year, the firm believes that Adobe has more margin upside than revenue upside. The consensus price target for the tech giant is $322.23. The stock was last seen at $304.17.

AutoZone Inc. (NYSE: AZO) was raised to Peer Perform at Wolfe Research. The auto parts retail giant has traded in a 52-week range of $798.41 to $1274.41. The consensus price target is $1,268.22. The shares ended trading Tuesday at $1,250, up almost 7% on the day.

CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL) was started with an Underperform rating and a $14 price target at Evercore ISI. That compares to the lower consensus target of $12. The stock closed Tuesday at $14.14.

Cigna Inc. (NYSE: CI) was downgraded to Underperform at Wells Fargo. Shares have traded in a 52-week range of $141.95 to $213.71. The consensus price target for the health care giant is $219.27, and the stock closed Tuesday at $191.71. Shares were down over 1% in the premarket.

Conn’s Inc. (NASDAQ: CONN) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Stifel. The 52-week trading range for the struggling retailer is $13.45 to $27.57. The consensus price target is $31.10, and shares closed way below that Tuesday at $13.45.

Encompass Health Corp. (NYSE: EHC) was downgraded to Underperform at Wells Fargo. The shares have traded in a 52-week range of $56.74 to $74.52 and have a consensus price target of $77.19. The stock closed Tuesday at $71.79.

51Job Inc. (NASDAQ: JOBS) was started with an Equal Weight rating at Morgan Stanley, which has a $71 price target. That compares with a consensus target of $77.37. The last trade on Tuesday came in at $81.21, up over 2% on the day.

Fortive Corp. (NYSE: FTV) was raised to Overweight from Neutral at Morgan Stanley, which also raised the price objective on the stock to $91. The consensus target is $76.47. The stock was last seen Tuesday at $73.84. Shares were higher in the premarket action.

Golar LNG Ltd. (NASDAQ: GNLG) was started with a Sell rating and a $12 price target at Goldman Sachs. That compares with the much higher consensus target of $23.18. The stock closed Tuesday at $13.65.