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Analysts are upwardly revising their ratings today on software giant Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), plus biopharmaceutical stocks Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:GILD) and Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN). Here's a quick look at today's bullish brokerage notes on MSFT, GILD, and AMGN.
- Following Thursday's well-received job-cuts announcement, MSFT today garnered a price-target hike to $50 from $44 at Barclays. Despite the blue chip's impressive year-to-date gain of 19%, most analysts remain on the fence when it comes to Microsoft Corporation. Less than half of the brokerage firms tracking MSFT have deemed it worthy of a "buy" or better rating, leaving plenty of room for upgrades on this outperforming stock in the future. MSFT shares closed at $44.53 yesterday, and are pointed fractionally higher ahead of the bell.
- Nomura lifted its price target on GILD to $141 from $130, implying expected upside of nearly 66% to yesterday's close at $85.07. Most analysts have slightly tamer expectations for Gilead Sciences, Inc., as the average 12-month price target weighs in at $101.57. The stock is up 13.3% in 2014, and is currently testing support in the $85 region -- a former layer of resistance that could now switch roles to serve as a floor. Looking ahead, GILD will announce its second-quarter earnings results after the market closes next Wednesday, July 23.
- After announcing positive trial results for its thyroid drug, AMGN scored a price-target increase to $149 from $144 at Deutsche Bank. Shares of Amgen, Inc. ended yesterday's session at $115.39, so the brokerage firm is banking on upside of more than 29%. To put that forecast in perspective, AMGN is up 10.1% year-over-year, and has gained only 1.1% so far in 2014. However, the stock's second-quarter pullback was contained by its rising 320-day moving average, and AMGN is up 0.7% ahead of the bell.