Ahead of the big debate between the two leading presidential candidates, the markets have opened on a jittery note, with all major indices trading in the red. However, crude prices are showing an uptick, which may have a soothing effect on the market. Apart from these factors, the markets are also being affected by analyst action, including ratings changes on several stocks.
Some of the prominent stocks that received upgrades from analysts recently are Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON), Energy Transfer Partners LP (NYSE:ETP), Marriott International Inc (NASDAQ:MAR), and AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T). In this article, we will look at the new ratings and price targets for these stocks and discuss why the analysts like them.
At Insider Monkey, we track more than 750 hedge funds, whose 13F filings we analyze as part of our small-cap strategy. Our research has shown that imitating a portfolio that includes the 15 most popular small-cap stocks among hedge funds can outperform the market by as much as 95 basis points per month on average (see more details here).
Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) was upgraded by Credit Suisse to ‘Neutral’ from ‘Underperform’ this morning. The investment bank does not have a price target on the company’s stock, which has fallen by 28% this year. Ericsson recently announced slashing 3,000 jobs as part of a cost-cutting initiative, as well as plans to close the last of its Swedish manufacturing sites. It’s hoped that the cost-cutting measures will help boost the company’s bottom-line. Among the funds we track, 12 were long $73 million worth of Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) shares in aggregate at the end of June, having amassed 3.50% of its outstanding stock.
Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON) was upgraded to ‘Market Perform’ from ‘Underperform’ by Sanford C. Bernstein following its merger agreement with Bayer. The research firm also boosted its price target on the stock to $114.26, up from the previous target of $82.81. Despite the upgrade, analyst Jonas Oxgaard noted that it’s too early to know whether the merger will be approved by authorities. In addition to the merger news, Monsanto recently announced that it will invest $1.6 million towards a climate change initiative. The initiative will help farmers reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The number of funds in our database long Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON) stood at 87 at the end of June, up from just 51 at the end of March.
Three more stocks that analysts are loving right now are analyzed on the next page.