Stocks had a mixed week last week, but the COVID-19 vaccine rollout has markets excited, despite more shutdown efforts. Investors should keep in mind that the major equity indexes are still almost at all-time highs, regardless of all the caution and concerns about rising COVID-19 cases and shutdowns. The current view is to look out to 2021 for an economic recovery and for the vaccine(s) to be more widespread.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week with a goal of finding new ideas for investors and traders alike. Some of these daily analyst calls cover stocks to buy. Other calls cover stocks to sell or avoid. Remember that no single analyst call should ever be used as a basis to buy or sell a stock. Consensus analyst target data is from Refinitiv.
These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Monday, December 14, 2020.
Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ALXN) has agreed to be acquired by AstraZeneca in a $39 billion cash and stock buyout that values the company at $175 per share. Wedbush Securities downgraded it to Neutral from Outperform, and Robert W. Baird downgraded it to Neutral from Outperform.
American Electric Power Co. (NYSE: AEP) was raised to Buy from Neutral with an $84 price target at Mizuho.
Anthem Inc. (NYSE: ANTM) was reiterated as Outperform and its price target was raised to $400 from $370 (versus a $311.40 prior close) at SVB Leerink.
BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings Inc. (NYSE: BJ) was downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan.
Cigna Corp. (NYSE: CI) was reiterated as Market Perform but its price target was raised to $240 from $230 (versus a $209.35 prior close) at SVB Leerink.
Clorox Co. (NYSE: CLX) was raised to Buy from Neutral with a $249 price target at Citigroup. Shares closed at $201.73 on Friday and have a 52-week high of $239.87 and a consensus target price of $223.64.
CVS Health Corp. (NYSE: CVS) was reiterated as Market Perform but its price target was raised to $80 from $73 (versus a $71.58 prior close) at SVB Leerink.
Digital Realty Trust Inc. (NYSE: DLR) was downgraded to Sector Weight from Overweight at KeyBanc Capital Markets.
Hanesbrands Inc. (NYSE: HBI) was downgraded to Hold from Buy at Stifel, which cut its price target to $15 from $17. Shares closed down five cents at $13.96 on Friday, with a $15.21 consensus target price.
HCA Healthcare Inc. (NYSE: HCA) was raised to Overweight from Neutral and the price target was raised to $194 from $143 at JPMorgan. Shares closed down 2.6% at $157.57 on Friday, with a $156.38 consensus target price.
Michaels Companies Inc. (NYSE: MIK) was downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan.
Shake Shack Inc. (NYSE: SHAK) was reiterated as Market Perform but its price target was raised to $83 from $62 at Cowen.
Telos Corp. (NASDAQ: TLS) was up almost 3.3% at $20.19 on Friday. Needham started it as Buy with a $31 target price, Wedbush started it as Outperform with a $30 target and B. Riley started as Buy with a $34 price target.
U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB) was raised to Neutral from Underweight at JPMorgan.
Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) was downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital Markets, but the firm did raise its price target to $185 from $165. Shares closed up over 13% at $175.72 on Friday’s overexcitement about its new streaming model expansion.
XPeng Inc. (NYSE: XPEV) was started with a Buy rating and a $58 price target at Deutsche Bank, which noted it as one of the top Chinese electric vehicle makers that can disrupt the auto industry. Shares closed down about 1.1% at $44.31 on Friday, with a $52.17 consensus target price and a $31.6 billion market cap.
Zagg Inc. (NASDAQ: ZAGG) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at D.A. Davidson after news it was being acquired in a low-premium acquisition.
A new Jefferies research report suggests the firm’s forecasts for the semiconductor industry for the first half of 2021 could prove to be very conservative. It has five semiconductor picks for investors looking to add chip stocks to aggressive growth portfolios.
Friday’s top analyst upgrades and downgrades included Broadcom, Corning, Enphase Energy, Etsy, First Solar, Lyft, Nike, SolarEdge Technologies, Tesla and Uber Technologies and Walt Disney.