Check out today's top analyst calls from around Wall Street, compiled by The Fly.
SYMANTEC BOOSTED TO BUY AT MIZUHO: Mizuho analyst Gregg Moskowitz upgraded Symantec (SYMC) to Buy from Neutral and raised his price target for the shares to $23 from $22. While the company's execution has been weak and its competition "remains fierce," the stock's risk/reward has become "too attractive to ignore," Moskowitz said. The analyst also believes Symantec's new management team will be much more focused on margin improvement, particularly within Enterprise Security. And while the company did announce an 8% headcount restructuring in August 2018, additional headcount cuts are likely going forward, added Moskowitz. His sum-of-the-parts analysis suggests "healthy" share upside from here.
MOSAIC RAISED TO BUY AT BOFA: BofA/Merrill analyst Steve Byrne upgraded Mosaic (MOS) to Buy from Neutral, saying shares are down by a third over the last four months due to a combination of earnings risks from an "unprecedented" wet spring in the U.S., as well as uncertainty associated with Brazilian tailings dams, and a weaker pricing outlook for phosphate and potash, but feels that the longer-term potential upside outweighs near-term risks. Byrne told investors in a research note that he toured Mosaic's assets in Brazil last week and is "comfortable" with the uncertainty, but said he is also more constructive on the long-term outlook for Fertilizantes, and added that while P and K pricing may be slow to recover, these nutrients have a more stable demand outlook than nitrogen.
DISNEY CUT TO IN-LINE AT IMPERIAL: Imperial Capital analyst David Miller downgraded Walt Disney (DIS) to In-Line from Outperform with an unchanged price target of $147. The analyst cited valuation for the downgrade with Disney shares up 25.7% since his upgrade to Outperform on November 21, 2018. Most of the catalysts, including the release of "Avengers: Endgame," the opening of the two Star Wars lands, the disposal of the regional sports networks, and the Disney streaming service analyst day, have either happened, or are set to happen, Miller noted. At a "record multiple" on 2021 earnings, the catalysts "are pretty much built in to the stock," added the analyst.
DOW INC. DOWNGRADED AT BMO: BMO Capital Markets analyst John McNulty downgraded Dow Inc. (DOW) to Market Perform from Outperform and lowered his price target for the shares to $52 from $58. The analyst said that while the company remains among the "diversified pure-play-commodity companies in the space" with focus on shareholder value and led by "solid" management, its 2019 is looking increasingly challenging due to persisting global trade issues and faltering macro growth. Given the weakness in Silicons, MDI/TDI, and PE markets, McNulty sees little recovery in the short term, reducing his FY19 and FY20 EPS outlook by 42c and 78c to $3.99 and $4.82, respectively.
THE STREET WEIGHS IN ON APPLE, IPHONES: Loop Capital analyst Ananda Baruah kept his Hold rating and $190 price target on Apple (AAPL), saying that while the company's iPhone unit demand is tracking in-line with consensus for the current quarter, he believes that the Street is too high regarding revenue expectations for the back half of the year on both both units and capacity per unit basis. The analyst further stated that Apple shares have "settled in" around his target, with the stock also benefiting from the "rotational safe haven" and increasing yield-driven investment interest.
JPMorgan analyst Samik Chatterjee expects the "macro uncertainty" to drive greater headwinds to the smartphone market. As a result, the analyst trimmed his forecast for calendar Q2 through calendar Q4 iPhone shipments by 4% to 139.5M units. Chatterjee, however, views the current macro headwinds as cyclical and believes they will likely be resolved with a trade resolution. He maintained his forecast for growth in shipments in 2020 and 2021, led by larger degree of upgrades planned for September 2020. The challenges in China are concerning, but Apple is "not new to navigating them," Chatterjee added. He finds investor concerns relative to Apple's share loss in China as "somewhat overblown." The analyst kept an Overweight rating on Apple while reducing his price target for the shares to $233 from $235.
Credit Suisse analyst Matthew Cabral says that the pace of decline for Apple's iPhone shipments in China has significantly improved thus far in Q2 as benefits of recent price cuts flow through, albeit with units still down and lagging the overall Chinese smartphone market. While "less bad," China data is a clear positive given the magnitude of the prior headwind, the analyst believes risk remains as trends decelerated from April to May and June is likely to be the biggest swing factor for Q2 given trade tensions did not re-ramp until the back half of May. Cabral expects Apple's share price to remain range-bound near-term, given the significant uncertainty created by U.S.-China trade tensions. He reiterated a Neutral rating and $209 price target on the shares.
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