Stocks quoted in this article:
The major market indexes are trading on both sides of breakeven, as investors digest a mixed bag of economic data. Among the equities in focus include professional networking site LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD), insurance issue American International Group Inc (NYSE:AIG), and cloud infrastructure concern Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKAM), which have all attracted the attention of analysts.
- LNKD is following tech stocks lower, down 3% at $162.42, despite a new "outperform" rating and $220 price target at Credit Suisse. The stock is no stranger to optimism from analysts, boasting 16 "strong buy" endorsements, compared to 13 "holds" and not a single "sell" or worse rating. In the same vein, the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.77 stands higher than just 9% of all other readings of the past year, implying that near-term options traders have rarely been more call-heavy.
- AIG is also in the red, down 1.7% at $43.71, shrugging off a price-target boost to $52 from $50 at Sandler O'Neill. There could be plenty more on the horizon for the security, which has outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by nearly 10 percentage points during the past two months. Currently, the average 12-month price target sits at $47.56, representing expected upside of just 8.8% to American International Group's current price. Despite touching a new two-year high of $46.46 just last week, however, AIG remains plagued by pessimism in the options pits; the equity's SOIR of 0.88 stands just 15 percentage points from an annual high.
- Not to be outdone, AKAM is 2.3% lower at $45.03, regardless of a price-target hike to $44 from $40 at Jefferies. From a technical standpoint, Akamai has bested the SPX by 28.5 percentage points during the past two months, but is in danger of ending a second straight session south of its 10-day and 20-day moving averages. On the sentiment front, there are plenty of skeptics gambling on a steeper pullback. Short interest accounts for more than 10% of AKAM's total available float, representing eight sessions' worth of pent-up buying demand, at the equity's average pace of trading.