Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Analyst Upgrades: Facebook Inc (FB), Bank of America, and Symantec

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on FB, BAC, and SYMC

by 1/8/2013 9:06 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:

Analysts are weighing in today on social networking site Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB - 29.42), financial services firm Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC - 12.09), and software issue Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC - 19.65). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes.

  • Up roughly 11% so far this month, FB saw its price target lifted to $34 from $32 at Baird this morning. The stock has also bested the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by more than 43 percentage points over the past three months, which could explain the bevy of call-buying activity in the options pits. Data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) shows a 20-day call/put volume ratio of 3.14 for FB. In other words, calls bought to open have more than tripled puts during the last four weeks.

  • In light of BAC's settlement with Fannie Mae, FBR raised its price target to $11.50 from $9 today, while RBC lifted its target by $2 to $14. The equity has surged nearly 93% during the past year, yet there are a number of holdouts among the brokerage bunch. BAC currently sports eight "strong buys" and one "buy" recommendation, compared to 16 tepid "holds," and one "strong sell" suggestion. Even more telling, Thomson Reuters shows an average 12-month price target of $11.13 for the stock, representing a discount to Monday's closing price of $12.09.

  • SYMC scored a price-target hike to $22 from $20 at UBS ahead of the opening bell, which could help add to the security's year-over-year gain of more than 25%. Meanwhile, the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) checks in at 0.36, confirming calls nearly triple puts among options scheduled to expire in the next three months. This ratio ranks in the 18th percentile of its annual range, meaning near-term traders have been more call-heavy toward SYMC less than one-fifth of the time during the last 12 months.

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