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Equity Brief: Ratings Changes for December 12th: URBN, VOLC, VRX, WLT, XEL, YELP, YHOO, ZIOP


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Copyright © Thomson Reuters 2012. All rights reserved.
2012-12-12 17:48:15 -

A number of stocks were upgraded and downgraded by equities research analysts
today, as reported by Analyst Ratings Network ( bit.ly/equitybriefdaily)
and Equity Brief:

UBS AG raised its price target on shares of Urban Outfitters, Inc. (URBN) from
$37.00 to $39.00. They have a neutral rating on the stock.

Credit Suisse downgraded shares of Volcano (VOLC) from an outperform rating to a
neutral rating. Their analysts now have a $27.00 price target on the stock, down
previously from $32.00. They wrote, "While we do not see achievement of the
acquisition metrics outlined above as unreasonable by any means, our analysis
suggests that VOLC will have to execute solidly on upcoming M&A in order to
create shareholder value with the potential for further dilution if funds are
spent on earlier stage/limited revenue 
assets. Thus, while we continue to see VOLC as a unique top-line growth story, we are moving to the sidelines pending further clarity on potential M&A activity." JPMorgan Chase initiated coverage on shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX). They issued an overweight rating on the stock and set a $75.00 price target. Davenport upgraded shares of Walter Energy (WLT) from a neutral rating to a buy rating. Davenport now has a $42.00 price target on the stock. They wrote, "The upgrade is based on our view that WLT's valuation multiple will peak in 2013, driven by a recovery in met coal prices. We expect a rebound in met prices will drive improved investor sentiment towards WLT. This should propel its multiple to peak levels as investors anticipate higher met prices driving significant earnings growth in 2014." Goldman Sachs initiated coverage on shares of Xcel Energy Inc. (XEL). They issued a neutral rating on the stock and set a $29.00 price target. They noted that the move was a valuation call. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Macquarie downgraded shares of Xcel Energy Inc. (XEL) from an outperform rating to a neutral rating. Their analysts now have a $28.00 price target on the stock. Credit Suisse initiated coverage on shares of Yelp (YELP). They issued an outperform rating on the stock and set a $25.00 price target. They wrote, "Our analysis suggests that the conversion rate of claimed local businesses to active local accounts is greater by a factor of 2x for the older domestic cohorts. Yelp has also disclosed that its International markets are essentially unmonetized. Hence, it is currently generating its Local Advertising revenue from just 36,000 businesses, out of over 27 million in the US alone. Our long-term estimates and price target are based on Yelp reaching 220,000 subscribers in five years; we do not think this is a large ask given the size of the market." JPMorgan Chase initiated coverage on shares of Yelp (YELP). They issued a neutral rating on the stock and set a $19.00 price target. Zacks reiterated its neutral rating on shares of Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO). They have a $20.00 price target on the stock. Zacks' analyst wrote, "Yahoo! Inc. is one of the leading providers of web-based services and advertisements. Third quarter earnings beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Yahoo's search business faces extremely tough competition from Google and Microsoft's ad platform is not generating enough yet. We are encouraged by the refocusing of the company, the many product upgrades and growth initiatives implemented, which are improving engagement on Yahoo properties. However, Yahoo is not one of our favorite plays in the space, given the uncertainty surrounding the search business, deterioration of display ad revenue share and its limited progress in the fast- growing mobile search segment. Reiterate Neutral." Jefferies Group downgraded shares of ZIOPHARM Oncology Inc (ZIOP) from a buy rating to a hold rating. Their analysts now have a $4.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $7.00. Goldman Sachs upgraded shares of Zimmer Holdings, Inc. (ZMH) from a sell rating to a neutral rating. They wrote, "Our investment thesis is based on the following factors: (1) improving outlook on US orthopaedic surgical volumes; (2) decelerating rates of pricing pressure; (3) capital allocation optionality with the potential for larger free cash flow returns to shareholders; and (4) shares appear fairly valued at current levels. Since being added to the Americas Sell List on August 9, 2011, ZMH shares are up 20.5% vs. the S&P 500 up 21.0%. On a trailing 12-month basis, ZMH is +33.0% vs. the S&P 500 +13.0%." Stay on top of analysts' coverage with Analyst Ratings Network's free daily email newsletter that provides a concise list of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and initiations. Register at bit.ly/equitybriefdaily Content and Media Contact: newseditor@equitybrief.net This announcement is distributed by Thomson Reuters on behalf of Thomson Reuters clients. The owner of this announcement warrants that: (i) the releases contained herein are protected by copyright and other applicable laws; and (ii) they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the information contained therein. Source: Equity Brief via Thomson Reuters ONE [HUG#1664495]


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