The futures were mixed on Friday, as investors get ready to wrap up a wild and woolly trading week on Wall Street. All three of the major indexes and the Russell 2000 were bludgeoned Thursday as once again the fear of rising interest rates took its toll on equities, especially in the tech-heavy Nasdaq, after the 10-year Treasury sold off and closed at the highest yield in over a year. Top analysts continue pointing to “bubble” metrics, like the massive “meme” retail stock and option trading, huge hedge fund leverage and IPOs that don’t make money as examples, and many are urging caution.
With fourth-quarter earnings results all but complete, most across Wall Street have not only been examining the final results but looking to see what guidance for the balance of the first quarter and the rest of 2021 looks like. With stocks very overbought, and major Wall Street firms still warning of the potential for 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 Friday, February 25, 2021.
American International Group Inc. (NYSE: AIG) was raised from Neutral to Overweight with a $55 price target at Atlantic Equities. The consensus target for the insurance giant is $44.60. The shares were last seen on Thursday at $43.95, down over 3% for the day.
Best Buy Co. Inc. (NYSE: BBY) was downgraded to Outperform from Strong Buy at Raymond James, which lowered the price target on the retailer to $120. The consensus target is $120.76, and the final trade for Thursday was at $102.94. That was down almost 10% after the company posted disappointing results.
Carvana Co. (NYSE: CVNA) was raised at Morgan Stanley from Equal Weight to Overweight with a $420 price target. The consensus target is much lower at $265.05. The last trade for Thursday was reported at $263.66, down over 7% for the day.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. (NASDAQ: CBRL) was named as the Zacks Bear of the Day stock. The firm said that fewer road trips and vacations, along with COVID-related shutdowns, are revealing the cracks here. Shares last closed at $154.08 and have a consensus price target of $159.86.