Check out today's top analyst calls from around Wall Street, compiled by The Fly.
HUMANA BOOSTED TO OVERWEIGHT AT CANTOR: Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Steven Halper upgraded Humana (HUM) to Overweight from Neutral and raised his price target for the shares to $345 from $300. The company's Louisiana Medicaid contract award demonstrates its success outside Medicare, Halper told investors in a research note. Further, the analyst believes Humana's investments in population health management and social determinants of health will accelerate its growth over time.
INSTRUCTURE RAISED TO OUTPERFORM AT OPCO: Oppenheimer analyst Brian Schwartz upgraded Instructure (INST) to Outperform from Perform, with a $56 price target, as he sees a good self-help story. The analyst noted that investor sentiment has materially shifted away from expectations of unrealistically high growth rates many years into the future and the Street has finally accepted that a decelerating U.S. education spending trend cannot be easily overcome by robust growth Internationally and/or in the corporate business and actually hurts Instructure. Overall, he thinks valuation has reached an attractive level and the risk/reward is too attractive to ignore.
OCCIDENTAL CUT TO IN-LINE AT EVERCORE: Evercore ISI analyst Doug Terreson downgraded Occidental Petroleum (OXY) to In-Line from Outperform without a price target after resuming coverage of the name. The company's "pledge" for greater capital discipline and enhanced corporate governance "proved fleeting" with the significant decline in return on capital employed due to the Anadarko acquisition, Terreson told investors in a research note. The purchase of Anadarko makes Occidental larger but "significantly less valuable," contended the analyst. He said the deal "destroyed value" and is 30% dilutive to return on capital employed. As such, Terreson finds Occidental shares fairly valued at current levels.
NETEASE LOWERED TO NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN: Goldman Sachs analyst Bill Liu downgraded NetEase (NTES) to Neutral from Buy after the company's Q2 revenues missed consensus, mainly on soft online games growth. He doesn't expect China's regulatory environment to improve until 2020, which will continue to limit the supply of new games in the rest of this year. Given the weaker outlook for online games, along with a deceleration in e-commerce growth, Liu lowered his 2019 and 2020 revenue forecasts for NetEase by 4%and 6%, respectively, and cut his price target on the stock to $270 from $293.
ROKU TARGET RAISED TO STREET-HIGH $150 AT NEEDHAM: Needham analyst Laura Martin raised her price target on Roku (ROKU) to $150 and kept her Buy rating, saying the stock remains her top mid-cap pick for 2019. The analyst contended that given their similar enterprise value to forward revenue multiples, she prefers Roku to Netflix (NFLX) as its "value proposition" to advertisers is on the rise. Martin is positive on Roku's position as an "arms dealer" in the OTT race, which makes it "indifferent" to which service or business model wins as long as it can sustain its revenue share from every service. At $150, Needham also has the highest price target on Roku on the Street.
Keywords: analyst, analyst calls, upgrades, downgrades, initiations, research, wall street