Tuesday's Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Apple, Baidu, Comcast, Exxon Mobil, General Motors and More

The futures were trading lower after a bumpy start to the trading week that saw all the major indexes finish the day lower. The failure of First Republic Bank and the sale of assets to JPMorgan was the big story on Monday, as S&P 500 earnings continued to roll in for the first quarter. Those earnings have so far come in largely better than expected. Note though that Wall Street analysts lowered the earnings bar in a big way prior to the reporting.

All eyes are now turning to the Federal Reserve meeting this week. Once again, it is expected that federal funds rate will be raised 25 basis points for the 10th straight hike over the past year. Some feel this could be the final increase, while others lean toward one more hike in June.

Treasury yields jumped higher across the curve, as bond market participants also will be watching and listening to commentary from the Fed. The 10-year note closed at 3.55% on Monday, while the two-year paper finished the day at 4.12%. The continuing inversion suggests recession is on the way.

Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude both started the weak lower, following through on last week’s nearly 1.5% decline. The selling was prompted in part by the pending rate increase and weaker-than-expected economic data out of China. While the energy complex has given back most of the gains since the OPEC production cuts, analysts expect the group to keep a lid on production, and higher prices could be forthcoming. Natural gas closed down 4% at $2.31.

Gold started off the week lower, closing down almost 0.5% at $1,989.70, while Bitcoin was the big loser on the day, closing down a stunning 4.65% at $27,889.

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 Tuesday, May 2, 2023.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL): BofA Securities reiterated a Neutral rating and lifted its $168 target price to $173. The consensus target is $170.89. The final trade on Monday was for $169.59 a share.

Baidu Inc. (NASDAQ: BIDU): Bernstein upgraded the stock to Outperform from Market Perform and has set a $160 target price. The consensus target is $180.66, and shares closed on Monday at $121.28.

Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB): Guggenheim upgraded the stock to Buy from Neutral and lifted the target price to $350 from $270. The consensus target is $325.04. The shares closed on Monday at $311.11.

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