5 Red-Hot Stocks Top Thursday's Biggest Wall Street Upgrades and Downgrades

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The futures were trading flat after a solid rebound Wednesday that saw all the significant indices finish the day higher, with the Nasdaq leading the way, closing up 0.75% at 14,969.65. With the December inflation data slightly above expectations and significant bank earnings kicking off the fourth-quarter earnings reports this week, all eyes will be only on the results but also the forward commentary, as many feel the consumer is tapped out and spending could fall off a cliff.


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Two-year and 10-year Treasury notes traded lower early Thursday.

Treasury yields were mixed across the curve as bond traders held fire, waiting to see how the inflation picture was trending. While many continue to make the case that rate cuts could come as soon as March, New York Federal Reserve President John William threw cold water on that possibility, saying in a speech Wednesday, “I expect that we will need to maintain a restrictive stance of policy for some time to achieve our goals fully.” The 10-year note closed trading at 4.03%, while the two-year paper was at 4.36%.


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Natural gas producers Chesapeake and Southwestern announce merger.

After a strong move higher recently, both Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude both closed lower on Wednesday, after some large inventory builds offset concerns over the Middle East war expansion. Brent finished the session down over 1% at $76.81, while WTI closed at $71.37, down 1.2%. Natural gas was the loser, closing 4.73% at $3.04.

Gold closed Wednesday modestly higher, with the February contract finishing the session at $2,034.40. The song remains the same, with significant central bank buying and geopolitical concerns keeping the wind in the sails of the bullion. Bitcoin was higher by 1% as the Securities and Exchange Commission finally gave the green light to exchange-traded funds for the cryptocurrency, which many feel could increase prices.

Earlier Thursday morning, Chesapeake Energy Corp. (NYSE: CHK) and Southwestern Energy Co. (NYSE: SWN) agreed to an all-stock merger valued at $7.4 billion. Chesapeake shareholders will own 60% of the combined company. The company will get a new name. (These five excellent dividend stocks have yields over 10%.)

Here are the top Wall Street analyst upgrades, downgrades and other calls for Thursday, January 11, 2024.


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Here are the top four upgrades announced on Thursday morning.

American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL) from Hold to Buy with a price target of $18 at Jefferies.

Chewy Inc. (NYSE: CHWY) from Equal Weight to Overweight at Barclays, which also increased its $19 price target to $30.

Mastercard Inc. (NYSE: MA) from Perform to Outperform with a price target of $510 at Oppenheimer.

Salesforce Inc. (NYSE: CRM) from Neutral to Outperform, and a $240 price target raised to $300, at Robert W. Baird.


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Parent of Taco Bell and Pizza Hut takes a downgrade Thursday.

Albemarle Corp. (NYSE: ALB) from Buy to Hold with the price target lowered from $155 to $135 at Deutsche Bank.

Blackstone Inc. (NYSE: BX) from Outperform to Perform at Oppenheimer. No price target was given.

Paramount Global (NASDAQ: PARA) from Neutral to Sell, with the price target cut from $17 to $11, at Redburn Atlantic.

Seagate Technology Holdings PLC (NASDAQ: STX) from Neutral to Underperform with a price target of $65 at Exane BNP Paribas.

WPP PLC (NYSE: WPP) from Buy to Sell at UBS. The firm cut its price target from 1,200 pence to 700 pence as well.

Yum! Brands Inc. (NYSE: YUM) from Overweight to Equal Weight, and price target lowered from $150 to $135, at Wells Fargo.

Other Calls

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China-based online gaming company gets a restart and Outperform rating.

The Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (NYSE: IPG) initiated with a Neutral rating and price target of $36 at UBS.

Netease Inc. (NASDAQ: NTES) coverage resumed with an Outperform rating and a price target of $126.

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