The final trading day of 2021 has arrived, after a risk-off Thursday in which all the major indexes closed lower, though the Dow Jones industrials and the S&P 500 printed fresh intraday all-time highs. With virtually no headlines to drive the market, and very light trading across the board, the focus remains on Omicron, which threw a wrench into the major airlines over the Christmas holidays when they were forced to cancel thousands of flights due to staffing issues. One solid piece of economic data came in this week, as new claims for unemployment were below estimates and remained near a pre-pandemic and a 52-year low.
With much of the Federal Reserve’s forward-looking initiatives now baked in, Wall Street continues to focus on the big increases in energy and food costs and other spiraling inflation issues. The ongoing supply chain concerns and stagflation worries also remain front and center.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week with a goal of finding fresh 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 New Year’s Eve, Friday, December 31, 2021.
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ALNY): BofA Securities reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a $211 price target. The consensus target is slightly lower at $208.20. Thursday’s last trade was reported at $171.03 a share.
CURO Group Holdings Corp. (NYSE: CURO): Jefferies resumed coverage with a Buy rating and a $25 price target. The consensus target is $126.25 and Thursday’s closing share price was $15.76.
Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F): Citigroup reiterated its Neutral rating on the legacy car giant but bumped the target price to $23 from $20. The consensus target is $19.41. Ford shares closed on Thursday at $20.47.
General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM): Citigroup reiterated a Buy rating and raised the $90 price target to $95. The consensus target is just $73.10, and Thursday’s close was at $58.13 a share.
Grab Holdings Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRAB): Jefferies started coverage with a Buy rating and a $10.50 price target. The consensus target is $8.84, and the shares ended Thursday trading at $7.15.
Kanzhun Ltd. (NASDAQ: BZ): Jefferies started coverage with a Buy rating and a $44 price objective. The consensus target price is $41.53. The stock ended Thursday almost 12% higher, closing at $35.41 per share.
McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD): Argus reiterated a Buy rating on the fast-food heavyweight and raised the $275 price target to $300. That compares with a $274.74 consensus and Thursday’s final share price of $267.21.
MGE Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: MGE): BofA Securities maintained an Underperform rating on the stock but lifted the $64 target price to $71. The consensus target is $68.50, but shares were last seen on Thursday trading at $81.36.