Research Analysts’ Upgrades for December, 5th (CSRA, ES, FNLPF, GOLD, ILMN, INFY, LFC, MRWSY, NEM, ODP)
CSRA (NYSE:CSRA) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “CSRA’s second-quarter fiscal 2018 bottom-line figure was negatively impacted by declining margins. Nevertheless, the top-line benefitted from contract wins based on its deep domain knowledge and expertise in next-generation IT services. The company's strong partnerships with the likes of Amazon Web Services, ServiceNow, Microsoft, Cisco Systems, VMware and Oracle are additional tailwinds. However, the lower recompete win rate is a concern in our view. Additionally, the recently announced acquisition of Praxis Engineering which is to be completed in the current quarter is expected to weigh on EBITDA margin in the second half of 2018. Notably, the company has underperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis.”
Eversource Energy (NYSE:ES) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “Eversource Energy‘s systematic investments in renewable energy generation, primarily in transmission and distribution systems will help it to provide reliable services to its customers. If the company continues to reduce operating costs at the same levels of 2016, margins are bound to get a boost in the upcoming quarters. Moreover, its regulated investment plans will help it to boost earnings per share by 5–7% over the 2017–2020 time frame from the 2016 level of $2.96. Also, shares of the company have returned higher than the industry it belongs to in the last 12 months. However, the company's decision to withdraw its Access Northeast Pipeline plan due to regulatory uncertainty, will have an adverse impact on its growth prospects. Moreover, it faces challenges due to severe weather conditions.”
Randgold Resources (NASDAQ:GOLD) was upgraded by analysts at Citigroup Inc. from a neutral rating to a buy rating.
Illumina (NASDAQ:ILMN) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. They currently have $252.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “Post a promising third-quarter show, we expect Illumina to maintain its growth momentum on continued uptake of sequencing consumables, instruments and microarray portfolios. Management is also hopeful that recent launches like NovaSeq S4 flow cell and reagent kit for its NovaSeq 6000 System will drive demand for NovaSeq. We look forward to the launch of NovaSeq Xp workflow. Also, the company’s launch of Nextera DNA Flex buoys optimism. Moreover, the company recently partnered with Telegraph Hill Partners to set up an independent entity. Accordingly, over the last three months, Illumina has been trading above the broader industry. On the flip side, weak margins owing to the NovaSeq launch, higher array services revenues and unfavorable product mix within sequencing consumables will continue to act as deterrents.”
Infosys (NYSE:INFY) was upgraded by analysts at Bank of America Corp from a neutral rating to a buy rating.
China Life Insurance (NYSE:LFC) was upgraded by analysts at UBS AG from a neutral rating to a buy rating.
Wm Morrison Sup (OTCMKTS:MRWSY) was upgraded by analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc from a sell rating to a neutral rating.
Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating. They currently have $43.00 target price on the stock. According to Zacks, “Annual estimates for Newmont have been going up of late. Newmont’s shares have outperformed the industry it belongs to in the past six months. Newmont continues to invest in growth projects that are expected to boost its production performance. It also remains committed to de-lever its balance sheet. Moreover, the acquisition of CC&V represents a significant opportunity for the company. Improved operational efficiency is also allowing it to generate positive free cash flow.”
Office Depot (NASDAQ:ODP) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “Persistent weakness in the office products sector, stiff competition, loss of customers in Business Solutions Division and lower traffic count have hurt Office Depot that has underperformed the industry so far in 2017. We note both the top and bottom lines continued to decline year over year during the third quarter as well. Further, after assessing the impact of recent hurricanes, soft sales during the back to school period, temporary rise in the supply chain costs and investments to catapult into a services-driven company, Office Depot trimmed its full year adjusted operating income view. Nevertheless, the company is concentrating on business operating model, growth prospects, cost structure and omni-channel capabilities. Management expects total sales to be lower in 2017 versus 2016 due to store closures, tough market conditions and losses of contract customers. However, the rate of decline is likely to decelerate in the final quarter.”
Pentair (NYSE:PNR) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. Zacks Investment Research currently has $77.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “Pentair expects its top-line to benefit in 2018 from carryover on cost-out initiatives. The company is poised to grow on its focus on reorganization activities. It remains on track to separate Water and Electrical businesses into two publicly-traded companies. The separation is expected to occur through a tax-free spin-off of Electrical segment in second-quarter 2018. Both companies are well positioned for long-term growth and value creation. Further, Pentair continues to see strength in residential and commercial and especially in foodservice in its Filtration & Process business. The company has a positive record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. “
Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a buy rating. They currently have $140.00 price target on the stock. According to Zacks, “Red Hat is benefiting from strong deal wins, improving recurring revenues and cross-selling of cloud-based technology. The company continues to be benefited from strong subscription revenues and margin expansion driven by lower costs. We believe that a strong partner base that includes IBM, Intel, Dell , Google and Microsoft is the key catalyst. This will continue to help in expanding Red Hat's product portfolio, which will ultimately improve customer base. We note that the company has outperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis. Estimates have been stable lately ahead of the company’s Q3 earnings release. The company has mixed record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. However, intensifying competition, growing U.S. government exposure and foreign exchange volatility are some of the headwinds. Higher acquisition related expenses is also hurting profitability.”
Standard Chart (OTCMKTS:SCBFF) was upgraded by analysts at J P Morgan Chase & Co from a neutral rating to an overweight rating.
South32 (OTCMKTS:SOUHY) was upgraded by analysts at Citigroup Inc. from a neutral rating to a buy rating.
Terex (NYSE:TEX) was upgraded by analysts at OTR Global to a positive rating.
Washington Prime Group (NYSE:WPG) was upgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a sell rating to a hold rating. According to Zacks, “Washington Prime Group Inc. is a retail REIT. The company is engaged in the ownership, management, acquisition and development of retail properties. Washington Prime Group Inc., formerly known as WP Glimcher Inc., is based in COLUMBUS, United States. “
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