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Analysts are weighing in today on technology experts Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ), as well as gold miner Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes.
- BofA-Merrill Lynch upped its price target on AAPL to $590 from $575, following news that the company sold more computers last quarter than all of Microsoft Corporation's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows PC partners combined. The iPad parent also issued a statement concerning a planned audit of its mineral suppliers. On the charts, Apple Inc. is up 10.3% from its Jan. 31 intraday low of $493.55 to perch at $544.43, yet the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.66 ranks in the 85th annual percentile, demonstrating short-term speculators are more put-heavy than usual toward AAPL right now. Should the shares continue on their upward trajectory, a capitulation of option bears may be in the cards, which could create additional contrarian tailwinds.
- Inspired by ABX's earnings-induced jump of 5.9% yesterday to $20.09, RBC and UBS increased their price targets on the stock to $24 from $23, and to $20 from $18.50, respectively, this morning. TD Securities also raised its own price target, while Mackie downgraded its rating. Elsewhere, Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) has received mostly skeptical brokerage notes, with 15 of the 16 covering analysts dishing out "hold" or worse suggestions. Not to mention, the average 12-month price target of $19.50 denotes a discount to the equity's current perch.
- HPQ -- which is up 75.2% on a year-over-year basis to perch at $29.83 -- saw its price target hiked to $34 from $30 at BMO earlier today. By comparison, the consensus 12-month price target among covering analysts comes in at $29.71, just a stone's throw away from Hewlett-Packard Company's current price. Meanwhile, the stock maintains 13 "hold" or worse ratings, compared to five "buy" or better endorsements.