Equity Brief: Ratings Changes for December 21st: APA, ARCC, ARRS, BBBY, BCEI, BIG, BIIB, BKR
2012-12-21 16:16:03 -
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:
Zacks reiterated its neutral rating on shares of Apache (APA). They have a
$84.00 price target on the stock. Zacks' analyst wrote, "We like Apache's large
geographically-diversified reserve base, its balanced exposure to natural gas
and crude oil, and its multiyear trends in reserve replacement and production
growth. A pristine balance sheet helps the company to capitalize on investment
opportunities and strategic acquisitions, thereby further improving growth
visibility. However, we see limited upside potential for shares, taking into
consideration Apache's sensitivity to gas/oil price volatility, its drilling
results, costs, geo-political risks and project timing delays. As such, we
expect Apache to perform in line with the broader market and, therefore,
maintain our Neutral recommendation."
Barclays Capital reiterated its equal weight rating on shares of Ares Capital
Needham & Company raised its price target on shares of Arris Group, Inc. (ARRS)
from $15.00 to $18.00. They have a buy rating on the stock. They noted that the
move was a valuation call. They noted that the move was a valuation call.
Deutsche Bank lowered its price target on shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc.
(BBBY) from $75.00 to $65.00. They have a buy rating on the stock.
Bank of America downgraded shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) from a buy
rating to a neutral rating. Their analysts now have a $65.00 price target on the
stock, down previously from $80.00. They wrote, "3Q12 results disappointed
(again), with the Q3 comp coming in toward the low end of guidance and a lower
tax rate providing a 3 cent benefit. With an increase in couponing, sales mix
shift, and its recent acquisitions, BBBY is searching to find a new normal in
terms of comps and margins, but until growth stabilizes, we expect valuations to
remain depressed. Visibility is low at this point, with no near-term positive
catalysts for meaningful reacceleration in sales or margin trends other than
weaker comparisons in 2013. Despite our positive view on BBBY's longer-term
outlook, we think it could remain a value trap until visibility improves and see
better upside in PIR and WSM among home furnishings retailers."
Stifel Nicolaus raised its price target on shares of Bonanza Creek Energy Inc
(BCEI) from $30.00 to $35.00. They have a buy rating on the stock.
Citigroup initiated coverage on shares of Big Lots, Inc. (BIG). They issued a
buy rating on the stock and set a $36.00 price target. They wrote, "While BIG is
on pace to post its first annual comp decline in 14 years in 2012, we expect the
company to pick itself up in 2013 and return to positive comps and double-digit
EPS growth. The merchandising improvements made under John Martin's leadership
since August and BIG's turnaround efforts in Canada contribute to our above-
consensus 2013 EPS estimate of $3.27, and new traffic-driving initiatives
provide incremental upside to our current forecasts. With the stock trading at
8.6x next year's EPS, we see an opportunity to own BIG at an inflection point in
Zacks reiterated its neutral rating on shares of Biogen Idec Inc. (BIIB). They
have a $159.00 price target on the stock. Zacks' analyst wrote, "Biogen's third
quarter EPS of $1.90 was well above the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.61 and
the year-ago EPS of $1.59. Higher revenues boosted earnings. Third quarter 2012
revenues increased 6% to $1.385 billion, just above the Zacks Consensus Estimate
of $1.384 billion. Biogen increased its earnings outlook for 2012 again and now
expects EPS in the range of $6.40 - $6.50. Key products, Avonex and Tysabri,
should continue contributing significantly to sales. BG-12 should help drive
long-term growth. We are also pleased with Biogen's efforts to streamline its
pipeline. We remain Neutral on the stock. We expect competition in the MS market
to increase with the entry of Sanofi's Aubagio. "
FBR Capital reiterated its market perform rating on shares of Michael Baker Co.
(BKR). They have a $25.00 price target on the stock.
Standpoint Research downgraded shares of BlackRock, Inc. (BLK) from a buy rating
to a hold rating.
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