DoorDash and Cisco upgrades also among Thursday's notable calls
Check out today's top analyst calls from around Wall Street, compiled by The Fly.
ESTIMATES TOO HIGH: Piper Sandler analyst Michael Lavery last night downgraded Beyond Meat (BYND) to Underweight from Neutral with a price target of $95, down from $120. The company's current all-channel retail momentum will lag consensus expectations and foodservice consensus estimates "may be high," Lavery tells investors in a research note. The analyst believes Beyond Meat's current retail trends are running below levels needed to support consensus shipment expectations for Q3 and potentially in Q4.
ORDERING OPPORTUNITY: BofA analyst Michael McGovern upgraded DoorDash (DASH) to Buy from Neutral with a $255 price target. He expects non-restaurant ordering to help mitigate much of the post-pandemic drop in restaurant ordering, said McGovern, who expects online penetration of grocery, convenience, and alcohol spending to increase to 16% in 2026 from 8% in 2021. In addition, the firm's aggregated credit and debit card data suggest core restaurant spending is holding up better than expected, added McGovern.
CISCO UPGRADED, ADDED TO ANALYST FOCUS LIST: Credit Suisse analyst Sami Badri upgraded Cisco (CSCO) to Outperform from Neutral with a price target of $74, up from $56, following Investor Day presentations, updated TAMs, and the issuance of new guidance through FY25. There is a higher level of quality embedded in the product orders than investors initially appreciated, supported by management's above consensus revenue growth CAGR of 5%-7% through FY25, Badri tells investors in a research note. Badri believes investor cautiousness will abate as Cisco executes on its long-term guidance while ramping its recurring revenue plans, the analyst says.
Meanwhile, JPMorgan analyst Samik Chatterjee raised the firm's price target on Cisco Systems to $70 from $67 and keeps an Overweight rating on the shares. The analyst also added Cisco to JPMorgan's Analyst Focus List. The company's investor day offered insights into the next stage of its transformation, which is positioning it for "solid" sales growth, Chatterjee tells investors in a research note. Cisco is also on pursuing opportunities in "expansion" markets that will support growth materially better than expectations heading into the event as well as dispel investor perception of the company being levered to mature markets with limited growth, says the analyst.
ACCELERATED BILLINGS: BofA analyst Mihir Bhatia upgraded American Express (AXP) to Neutral from Underperform with a $169 price target. The analyst notes that the risk-reward on the stock has turned more "balanced" after its recent underperformance that was driven by fear that COVID-19 Delta-wave would slow the economic recovery and given few negative catalysts on the horizon. Bhatia adds however that at a recent conference this week, American Express noted that quarter-to-date total billings are up 3% relative to 2019 levels and accelerating from down 2% in Q2, which is "better than feared."
'FIERCE' COMPETITION: BofA analyst John Murphy downgraded Fisker (FSR) to Neutral from Buy with a price target of $18, down from $27. He views Fisker as "one of the more legitimate among the universe of start-up electric vehicle automakers," largely as a function of its relationship with contract manufacturer Magna (MGA), but he also notes that the competitive landscape is becoming "incredibly fierce."
Also in the EV space, Murphy downgraded Lordstown Motors (RIDE) to Underperform from Neutral with a price target of $5, down from $11. The company is "just one of many participants" in the automotive industry evolution towards electrification and "one of the less legitimate" start-up electric vehicle automakers, Murphy tells investors. While the company had originally ranked fairly well in his analysis, a series of operational and financial hurdles are now plaguing Lordstown as competition is "significantly heating up," Murphy added.
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