Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Altria, Boeing, Coca-Cola, GlaxoSmithKline, Halliburton, Kroger, Netflix and More

The futures traded higher on Wednesday morning as investors prepare for the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States. With fourth-quarter earnings reports starting to pour in, most across Wall Street will not only be examining the results, but also looking to see what guidance for the first quarter and the rest of 2021 looks like. With all the major indexes and the Russell 2000 still trading close to all-time highs, it makes sense for investors to start building some cash reserves while repositioning portfolios for 2021 as a pullback could be in the offing.

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 Wednesday, January 20, 2021.

Albertsons Companies Inc. (NYSE: ACI) was downgraded at Morgan Stanley from Equal Weight to Underweight with a $13 price target. The much higher Wall Street consensus target is $21, and Tuesday’s closing print came in at $17.79 per share.

Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO) was started with an Outperform rating and a $53 price target at Bernstein. The consensus target for the tobacco products behemoth is $47.79. The last trade on Tuesday came in at $41.23.

Beyond Meat Inc. (NASDAQ: BYND) was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at BTIG Research. Shares of the plant-based food company have traded in a wide 52-week range of $48.18 to $197.50, and they have a consensus price objective of $115.94. The final trade for Tuesday came in at $141.64. The shares were down almost 3% in premarket action.

Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) was raised to Hold from Sell at Berenberg, which also raised the price target on the aerospace giant to $215. The consensus target is $228.52, and Tuesday’s closing price was $210.71 a share.

Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) was started with an Outperform rating and a $58 price objective at Bernstein, The posted consensus target is $57, and shares were last seen on Tuesday at $48.51.

Domtar Corp. (NYSE: UFS) was raised to Buy from Hold at BofA Securities, which also lifted the price target to $40. That compares with the $35.61 consensus target and the close on Tuesday at $32.63.

Equity Residential Inc. (NYSE: EQR) was raised to Outperform from In Line at Evercore ISI. The real estate investment trust has traded in a 52-week range of $45.43 to $87.53 and has a consensus target of $59.83. The last trade on Tuesday hit the tape at $60.31.

GlaxoSmithKline PLC (NYSE: GSK) was downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse. The pharmaceutical giant’s shares have traded in a 52-week range of $31.43 to $48.25 and have a consensus price target of $48.50. The last trade on Tuesday came in at $38.54.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) was raised to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens, which also raised the price target on the oilfield services leader to $25. The lower $20.47 consensus is near Tuesday’s closing price of $20.54. Shares were trading up almost 3% in the premarket.

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