Wednesday Afternoon Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Apple, Crocs, Las Vegas Sands, Square and More

The broad markets were somewhat mixed on Wednesday after new economic data on China has fueled concerns over the pace of global growth. Overall, this data suggested that China’s recovery has not been as robust as once thought, with slowing retail sales and industrial production.

While this is bad news for China, the same could be said for the United States concerning recent Consumer Price Index data. Many are concerned about inflation that is tied to this index, but economists are looking more broadly in terms of the impact that this could have on Federal Reserve policy.

For now, the markets are cautiously optimistic, as the S&P 500, Nasdaq and Dow Jones industrials each edged higher on the day despite a negative start.

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 calls seen earlier in the day were on Alcoa, Caesars, Chevron, DraftKings, Sarepta and more.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL): Cowen reiterated an Outperform rating with a $180 price target. Shares were last seen trading around $148, and in the past year they have traded as high as $157.26.

Crocs Inc. (NASDAQ: CROX): Monness Crespi & Hardt reiterated a Buy rating and raised its price target to $180 from $160. Shares were trading near $153, and the consensus price target is $157.70.

Diamondback Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: FANG): Truist Securities boosted its $122 price target to $130. The shares have a 52-week range of $23.63 to $102.53, while the consensus price target is $112.32.

Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS): Wells Fargo initiated coverage with an Equal Weight rating and a $50 price target. That is less than the $63.92 consensus target and well above the current share price of roughly $37.

Penn National Gaming Inc. (NASDAQ: PENN): Wells Fargo started coverage with an Equal Weight rating and an $82 price target. Shares were last seen trading near $75 apiece. The consensus price target is $99.75.

Schneider National Inc. (NYSE: SNDR) Cowen upgraded the stock to an Outperform rating from Market Perform and raised the price target to $32 from $30. The stock was last seen at around $23 a share, and it has a consensus price target of $26.92.

Square Inc. (NASDAQ: SQ): Evercore ISI raised the price target to $361 from $371. Shares were trading around $246, and they have a consensus price target of $302.93.

Stitch Fix Inc. (NASDAQ: SFIX): MKM Partners lowered its $45 price target to $31, and the firm has a Sell rating. The $62.86 consensus target is well above the current share price near $34.

It looks increasingly likely that the Federal Reserve doesn’t start raising interest rates until 2023 or later. Income investors may want to look at utilities now, a somewhat contrarian play, but five utility stocks will hold up well when the long-awaited correction finally comes.

Analysts at JPMorgan shuffled the deck on oil and gas producers Wednesday morning, including a big downgrade for Chevron. Furthermore, in its annual market outlook for the aircraft industry, Boeing projects a total market for airplanes and services of $9 trillion over the next decade.

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