Wednesday Afternoon Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: CrowdStrike, DTE Energy, PPL and More

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Stocks were mixed approaching the middle of the first trading day of September, after a down day Tuesday in which all the major indexes closed marginally lower. Investors still locked in yet another month of gains in August, marking the seventh straight month of gains for the S&P 500 and an increase of over 20% for the year thus far.

With the long Labor Day holiday weekend right around the corner, which typically marks the end of the slower summer trading time, investors can expect a return to more normal trading volumes next week. Needless to say, all eyes across Wall Street are laser-focused on the August jobs report that will be released Friday morning. Analysts are predicting anywhere from 609,000 to 750,000 jobs will be added. This will come on the heels of the ADP numbers, which disappointed Wednesday morning with private payrolls up only 374,000, versus the estimate of 600,000.

24/7 Wall St. is reviewing some big analyst calls seen on Wednesday. We have included the latest analyst call on each stock, as well as a recent trading history and the consensus targets among analysts. Note that analyst call seen earlier in the day included Apple, AMC Entertainment, Facebook, First Solar, Kansas City Southern and Roku.

Ambarella Inc. (NASDAQ: AMBA): Stifel reiterated its Buy rating on the stock and lifted the price objective to $145 from $140. Cowen reiterated an Outperform rating on the shares and raised the price target to $150 from $145. The consensus price objective is $133. The stock has traded in a 52-week range of $46.99 to $137.21.

CrowdStrike Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: CRWD): Stifel reiterated a Buy rating on the cybersecurity leader’s stock and raised the target price to $315 from $300. Deutsche Bank also reiterated a Buy rating, and it boosted its price target to $320 from $265. The consensus target is $290.23. Over the past year, the shares have traded in a wide range of $115.25 to $289.24.

Deluxe Corp. (NYSE: DLX): Cowen started coverage with an Outperform rating and a $55 price target. Over the past year, the shares of the leading payments and checks company have traded between $20.89 and $48.38. The consensus target price is $51.

DTE Energy Co. (NYSE: DTE): Wells Fargo downgraded the Detroit-based utility from Overweight to Equal Weight and has a $128 price target. The shares have traded between $93.31 and $123.17 over the past 52 weeks, and they have a consensus price target of $127.70. As it is trading near that 52-week high after a very strong run, this looks like a valuation call.

PPL Corp. (NYSE: PPL): Wells Fargo raised its Equal Weight rating on this utility stock to Overweight and hiked the price target to $34 from $22. The consensus target price is $31.32. The shares have traded in a tight 52-week range of $25.47 to $30.81.

SL Green Realty Corp. (NYSE: SLG): Barclays started coverage with an Overweight rating and an $81 price target. Over the past 52 weeks, the stock has traded between $41.68 and $85.65, and it has an $80.13 consensus price target.

SPS Commerce Inc. (NASDAQ: SPSC): Benchmark reiterated a Buy rating on the shares and boosted the target price to $150 from $120. That compares with a consensus target of $130. Over the past year, the stock had traded between $70.15 and $137.08.

Verint Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: VRNT): Cowen began coverage with an Outperform rating and a $75 price target. That is higher than the $61.43 consensus target. The 52-week trading range is $23.27 to $52.70.

With a confluence of negative factors mounting, it makes sense for investors to take some simple, but smart steps to soften the blow if we do get a sizable market correction. Veteran investors know that it is not a question of if a sizable correction will come but when.

See who is winning in the match-up between meme stock bulls and short sellers.

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