The futures were lower on Thursday as investors Wednesday watched the Dow Jones industrials close at yet another record high while the S&P 500, Nasdaq and the Russell 2000 took a breather. Investors are continuing to cheer the possibility of a big stimulus package becoming a reality and fourth-quarter earnings that came in very strong. Top analysts on Wall Street are pointing to “bubble” metrics, like the massive retail stock and option trading, huge hedge fund leverage and IPOs that don’t make money, and many are urging caution.
Though fourth-quarter earnings reporting is almost complete, most across Wall Street still are examining not only the results but also looking to see what guidance for the balance of the first quarter and the rest of 2021 looks like. With stocks very overbought and many trades crowded, and major Wall Street firms warning of an impending 5% to 10% correction, it makes sense for investors to start building some cash reserves while repositioning portfolios for the rest of 2021.
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 Thursday, February 18, 2021.
AMC Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: AMCX) was named as the Zacks Bear of the Day stock. The firm said that streaming entertainment is booming, but smaller players struggle to compete with the big names. Shares last closed at $51.16, but the consensus price target is all the way down at $33.06.
Babcock & Wilcox Enterprises Inc. (NYSE: BW) was started with a Buy rating and a $12 price target at B. Riley Securities. The consensus target price is $8.73. Shares closed on Wednesday at $6.72, which was down over 9% for the day.
Cognyte Software Ltd. (NASDAQ: CGNT) was started with a Buy rating and a $42 price target at Stifel. The consensus target is $24.42. The shares were last seen on Wednesday at $29.75.