Friday's Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: AMC Entertainment, APA, Chewy, FirstSolar, Marathon Oil, Match, Meta, Pioneer Natural Resources, Toast and More

The futures were trading lower, as we get ready to end a rollercoaster week for the stock market. All the major indexes finished a volatile Thursday higher, with the Nasdaq leading the way, up over 1%. While Federal Reserve Chair Powell raised rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday, many took his prepared comments and his press conference follow-up as a sign that a final hike could be coming as soon as the next meeting in early May. While that could be the case, and the terminal rate ends up in the 5.10% range, it is almost a given that it could stay at the highest level since 2007 well into 2024.

Treasury yields plunged again across the curve, with the short end trading much lower while the longer 30-year bond yield was down slightly. The inversion between the benchmark 10-year note and the two-year paper remained, with the former closing at 3.41% and the latter at 3.80%. While the spread has tightened dramatically, it still signals recession is on the way.

Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude closed lower on Thursday and some analysts feel that a surprise jump in growth and demand from China could be in the offing, as the spring and summer months could see a wide reopening of the country and a significant increase in demand. While few see prices returning to last summer’s highs, a solid increase from current trading levels is very possible.

Natural gas finished the day over 1% lower at $2.15, while gold continued its run back toward the $2,000 level, closing the day up almost 1.3% at $1995. Bitcoin also finished the day higher, at $28.203, up over 3%.

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, March 24, 2023.

Accolade Inc. (NASDAQ: ACCD): Guggenheim upgraded the stock to Buy from Neutral and has a $16 target price. The consensus target is $13.68, and the stock ended Thursday’s session at $13.25, up over 10% on the day, likely on the upgrade.

AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AMC): Citigroup resumed coverage of the “meme superstar” with a Sell rating and a $1.60 target price. The consensus target is $2.39, and shares closed at $4.45 on Thursday.

Americold Realty Trust Inc. (NYSE: COLD): Barclays raised its Underweight rating to Equal Weight, and the $30 target price increased to $32. The consensus target is $33.65. The stock closed on Thursday at $27.05.

APA Corp. (NYSE: APA): Goldman Sachs slashed its $51 target price on the Neutral-rated shares to $33. The consensus target is $51.38. Thursday’s close was at $34.01.

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