Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Analyst Upgrades: Apple Inc. (AAPL), Twitter Inc, and Micron Technology, Inc.

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on AAPL, TWTR, and MU

by 5/28/2014 9:25 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:

Analysts are weighing in today on tech giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), microblogging site Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), and semiconductor concern Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes.

  • Bernstein and Barclays lifted their price targets on AAPL to $700 from $615, and to $655 from $590, respectively, this morning. For comparison, the average 12-month price target among analysts is $628.33, which is just a stone's throw away from the equity's current perch of $625.63. Ratings-wise, however, Apple Inc. boasts 30 "buy" or better endorsements, versus nine "holds" and not a single "sell" suggestion. Technically speaking, AAPL shares have been on a trek to higher highs in recent sessions, hitting a fresh annual peak of $625.86 yesterday, and now -- at last night's closing price -- the stock stands 11.5% above its year-to-date flat line.

  • Although it is down 52.1% year-to-date to trade at $30.51, TWTR received an upgrade to "buy" from "neutral" at Nomura this morning. What's more, activity in Twitter Inc's options pits has also been bullishly skewed of late, with the equity's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio coming in at 1.88, meaning calls bought to open have nearly doubled puts during the past two weeks. An extension of TWTR's technical woes may cause these bullish bettors to hit the exits, which could add more pressure on the shares. However, it is important to note that some of these call players could also be short sellers in disguise -- hedging against a potential upswing -- as short interest currently accounts for 14.9% of the stock's available float.

  • MU -- which has advanced 29% since the start of 2014 to perch at $28.06 -- saw its price target raised to $32 from $30 at UBS last night. Meanwhile, options traders have been upping the bearish ante on the stock in recent sessions. In fact, the equity's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.39 ranks in the 84th annual percentile. In other words, while long calls have technically outnumbered puts, the latter have been scooped up at a faster-than-usual relative pace of late. As such, Micron Technology, Inc. shares could end up benefiting from a capitulation of bearish bettors further down the road.
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