The futures were mixed on Thursday after another day of momentum stock selling, and with the jobless claims coming in pretty much as advertised investors and traders are all looking for market direction. With the future of the stimulus bill now in the Senate, many feel that with some changes it will pass no later than next week. Top analysts on Wall Street 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 continued near-term caution.
With fourth-quarter earnings results almost complete, most across Wall Street have not only been examining the final results but also looking to see what guidance for the balance of the first quarter and the rest of 2021 looks like. With stocks still near overbought conditions, and major Wall Street firms still warning of the potential for impending 5% to 10% correction (which already may have begun), 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, March 4, 2021.
Align Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: ALGN) was named as the Bull of the Day at Zacks, which said that this tech-focused firm posted back-to-back strong quarters to end 2020 on a high note and its outlook is impressive. Shares most recently closed at $527.43 and have a consensus price target of $610.00.
Atmos Energy Corp. (NYSE: ATO) was raised from Neutral to Buy with a $99 price target at Mizuho. The consensus target is slightly higher at $102.44. The stock was last seen Wednesday at $88.45.
Bumble Inc. (NASDAQ: BMBL) was started with a Positive rating and a $78 price target at Susquehanna. There is no consensus target as the stock had a recent red-hot initial public offering. The shares closed Wednesday at $62.01, down almost 9% for the day.
CBOE Global Markets Inc. (NASDAQ: CBOE) was upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at Piper Sandler, which also raised the target price to $108. The posted consensus target is $100.87. Wednesday’s last trade came in at $96.02.