Investment Analysts’ Upgrades for February, 6th (BEP, BKCC, BUSE, CHRW, CLX, CVX, CYS, DGX, ECOM, GNCA)

Investment Analysts’ upgrades for Tuesday, February 6th:

Brookfield Renewable Partners (NYSE:BEP) (TSE:BEP) was upgraded by analysts at Credit Suisse Group AG from a neutral rating to an outperform rating.

Blackrock Capital Investment (NASDAQ:BKCC) was upgraded by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. from a neutral rating to an overweight rating.

First Busey (NASDAQ:BUSE) was upgraded by analysts at B. Riley from a neutral rating to a buy rating. The firm currently has $35.00 price target on the stock, down from their previous price target of $36.00.

C.H. Robinson Worldwide (NASDAQ:CHRW) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. They currently have $103.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “Shares of C.H. Robinson have outperformed its industry in the last six months. The company reported better-than-expected results in the fourth quarter of 2017. Both earnings and revenues also increased year over year. Notably, increased pricing and volume growth across most transportation sectors drove the top line. The company's efforts to expand globally through mergers are impressive. The acquisition of Milgram & Company, completed in August 2017, is likely to boost the company's global presence and will be accretive this year. Its initiatives to reward shareholders through dividends and share buy backs are also encouraging. In December 2017, the company hiked its quarterly dividend by 2.2%. However, the company is struggling with high costs. Declining intermodal revenues in the fourth quarter also raise concerns.”

Clorox (NYSE:CLX) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. The firm currently has $147.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “Clorox delivered better-than-expected second-quarter fiscal 2018 earnings, which also marked its fifth straight earnings beat. Results gained from solid sales and lower tax rate. Sales improved year over year driven by strength in International, Lifestyle and Cleaning segments due to higher prices. Moreover, the company’s 2020 Strategy, aimed at bolstering growth for the improvement of categories and overall market share, bodes well. Moreover, the company reiterated sales guidance for fiscal 2018, while it raised the earnings view to include the benefits of the new tax reform. However, Clorox lagged the industry in the past month. The company witnessed significant pressure on gross margin in the second quarter owing to elevated input costs for commodities and tightening of transportation market, which are likely to continue hurting margins in fiscal 2018. Nonetheless, its approach to brand management and Go Lean strategy are noteworthy.”

Chevron (NYSE:CVX) was upgraded by analysts at Barclays PLC from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating. They currently have $130.00 price target on the stock.

CYS Investments (NYSE:CYS) was upgraded by analysts at Compass Point from a sell rating to a neutral rating.

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. They currently have $115.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “Quest Diagnostics’ fourth-quarter earnings exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate, while revenues remained in line with the same. On a positive note, the company is currently refocusing on its core diagnostic information services business and working on disciplined capital deployment. It is witnessing significant growth through infectious disease testing, prescription drug monitoring and wellness. Also several new collaborations with hospitals and integrated delivery networks continue to act as major growth drivers. We are looking forward to the recent buyout of Mobile Medical Examination Service, a national provider of home-based health risk assessments and related services. This apart, the 2018 guidance looks promising. Over the past year, Quest Diagnostics was trading above the industry. On the flip side, unit price headwind continues to hamper growth. Tough competitive landscape and reimbursement issues are the other woes.”

ChannelAdvisor (NYSE:ECOM) was upgraded by analysts at DA Davidson from a neutral rating to a buy rating. DA Davidson currently has $12.50 target price on the stock.

Genocea Biosciences (NASDAQ:GNCA) was upgraded by analysts at Needham & Company LLC from a hold rating to a buy rating. Needham & Company LLC currently has $3.00 price target on the stock.

HSBC (NYSE:HSBC) was upgraded by analysts at Santander from a sell rating to a hold rating.

Hercules Capital (NYSE:HTGC) was upgraded by analysts at Sandler O’Neill from a hold rating to a buy rating.

International Paper (NYSE:IP) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. The firm currently has $70.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “International Paper reported solid fourth-quarter 2017 results with healthy year-over-year increase in earnings and revenues. The company has strategically offloaded businesses in China to focus more on its U.S. operations. It has also completed the divesture of its consumer packaging business in North America to Graphic Packaging. In North America, the company envisions a large opportunity within its industrial packaging businesses, which continue to generate the best margins in the industry. The company is taking initiatives to drive further margin expansion over time across the business. At the same time, International Paper intends to invest significantly to further improve its North American containerboard mill system, enhance product quality, and reduce manufacturing and delivery costs. However, high pension obligations remain a significant headwind. International Paper has also underperformed the industry in the last three months.”

L3 Technologies (NYSE:LLL) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. The firm currently has $236.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “L3 Technologies ended 2017 on an impressive note. Its fourth-quarter earnings as well as revenues exceeded the respective Zacks Consensus Estimate. The latest U.S. tax reform had a positive impact on the company’s fourth-quarter bottom-line growth. L3 Technologies enjoys a leading position in defense electronics, communications and ISR markets. Moreover, its consistent growth in the commercial aviation space, especially in North America and Europe, is appreciable. However, high interest rate leads the company to bear high interest expenses which in turn may put weigh on its bottom line.”

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. Zacks Investment Research currently has $78.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “Altria has been progressing well with expansion in the smokeless products category, which has helped it surpass the industry in the past six months. Notably, the company’s flagship MarkTen brand is now a leading U.S. e-vapor brand, with a substantial retail market share. These factors fueled Altria’s smokeless product revenue in fourth-quarter 2017, wherein earnings kept its stellar year-over-year growth trend intact. Results were backed by solid pricing, higher OCI and lower tax rates, stemming from recent tax reforms. However, rising health consciousness and stern government regulations to curb tobacco consumption has been hurting cigarette volumes and denting Altria’s top line for quite some time. Moreover, the Wine category remains sluggish due to stiff competition. Nonetheless, investments in key growth areas, efforts to lift Marlboro’s share and expected gains from tax reforms led to a robust earnings view.”

Micron Technology (NASDAQ:MU) was upgraded by analysts at Needham & Company LLC from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating. The firm currently has $76.00 price target on the stock.

Oaktree Specialty Lending (NASDAQ:OCSL) was upgraded by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. from a neutral rating to an overweight rating.

Pennantpark Floating Rate Capital (NASDAQ:PFLT) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “PennantPark Floating Rate Capital Ltd. is a business development company. It is a closed-end, externally managed and non-diversified investment company. Its investment objectives are to generate current income and capital appreciation by investing primarily in floating rate loans and other investments made to the United States middle-market companies. The firm provides first lien secured debt and other opportunistic financings (mezzanine, private high yield debt, preferred and common stock) to middle market sponsors and companies. Its investments may include equity features, such as direct investments in the equity securities of borrowers or warrants or options to buy a minority interest in a portfolio company. It has investments in various sectors, including aerospace and defense; consumer services; healthcare and pharmaceuticals, and others. The firm has a value-oriented, bottoms-up investment philosophy. Its investment activities are managed by the investment advisor, PennantPark Investment Advisers LLC. “

Paramount Group (NYSE:PGRE) was upgraded by analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc from a sell rating to a neutral rating.

IMPINJ (NASDAQ:PI) was upgraded by analysts at Piper Jaffray Companies from a neutral rating to an overweight rating.

Paringa Resources (OTCMKTS:PNGZF) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “Paringa Resources Ltd. is involved in the exploration and development of resource projects. It primarily explores for coal. The company’s principal project consists of Poplar Grove Mine, the Cypress Mine and the Buck Creek coal mining complex primarily in the Illinois coal basin in western Kentucky. Paringa Resources Ltd. is headquartered in Evansville, Indiana. “

Uniqure (NASDAQ:QURE) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. The firm currently has $20.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “UNIQURE B.V. is involved in developing gene therapy for patients of genetic or acquired diseases. It offers Glybera for the treatment of lipoprotein lipase deficiency, an orphan metabolic disease. The company’s product pipeline includes which are in clinical trials are additional adeno-associated virus consist of AMT-060, AMT-021, AMT-110 and AAV2/glial. UNIQURE B.V. is headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. “

Royal Bank of Scotland Group (NYSE:RBS) was upgraded by analysts at Bank of America Corp from an underperform rating to a neutral rating.

RGC Resources (NASDAQ:RGCO) was upgraded by analysts at Janney Montgomery Scott from a neutral rating to a buy rating.

Skyworks Solutions (NASDAQ:SWKS) was upgraded by analysts at BMO Capital Markets from a market perform rating to an outperform rating. They noted that the move was a valuation call. The analysts noted that the move was a valuation call.

Skyworks Solutions (NASDAQ:SWKS) was upgraded by analysts at UBS Group AG from a hold rating to a buy rating.

TIM Participacoes (NYSE:TSU) was upgraded by analysts at UBS Group AG from a market perform rating to an outperform rating.

Walker Greenbank (LON:WGB) was upgraded by analysts at N+1 Singer to a buy rating. N+1 Singer currently has GBX 200 ($2.80) target price on the stock.

Cimarex Energy (NYSE:XEC) was upgraded by analysts at SunTrust Banks, Inc. from a hold rating to a buy rating.

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