Stocks quoted in this article:
Analysts are weighing in today on aluminum producer Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA), professional networking site LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD), and online review forum Yelp Inc (NYSE:YELP). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes.
- AA put an earnings win under its belt last night, and also forecast an end to the nearly decade-long aluminum surplus (the leading cause of the industry's lowered prices). Subsequently, Cowen and Company and Stifel both lifted their price targets by $1 to $12 and $15, respectively, while UBS and Jefferies each increased their price targets by $2.50 to $12.50. Heading into the quarterly event, AA option players had placed bearish bets (relative to bullish) at a near-annual-high rate, as evidenced by the equity's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 0.82, which ranks 1 percentage point from a 12-month peak. So far this year, Alcoa Inc has advanced 17.9% to trade at $12.53, and is poised for more gains in today's session.
- While 2014 has been tough on LNKD -- with the shares down 22% year-to-date to trade at $169.10 -- Topeka upgraded the stock to "buy" from "hold" this morning. Meanwhile, in LNKD's options pits, call open interest (relative to put open interest) is at an annual-high level among options expiring within the next three months, as LinkedIn Corp's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.48 ranks the lowest of all comparable readings taken during the past 12 months.
- YELP, which has lost almost 31% over the past month to trade at $67.25, received its third upgrade of the week -- this one from CRT, which raised its rating on the stock to "buy" from "fair value." Today's bullish note follows last night's news that Yelp Inc increased its presence in the Asian market. Elsewhere, short-term option players have been more call-heavy than usual toward the equity. In fact, YELP's SOIR of 0.59 ranks lower than 80% of similar readings from the past year.