Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Analyst Upgrades: Time Warner, Big Lots, and Celgene

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on TWX, BIG, and CELG

by 3/7/2013 8:56 AM
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Analysts are weighing in today on media & entertainment company Time Warner Inc (NYSE:TWX - 55.46) , discount retailer Big Lots, Inc. (NYSE:BIG - 35.97), and biopharmaceutical issue Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG - 110.03). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes.

  • TWX -- which boasts a year-over-year gain of close to 52% -- was hammered with positive attention this morning, after announcing plans to spin off its Time Inc. magazine unit yesterday. Specifically, Stifel Nicolaus raised its price target to $63 from $58, while Nomura and Janney Capital also upped their respective price targets. Although the majority of the covering analysts seem to share this favorable opinion of the security, there are still a number of holdouts among the brokerage bunch. TWX currently sports 15 "buy" or better ratings, versus nine tepid "hold" suggestions.

  • Analysts at Deutsche Bank upgraded BIG to "hold" from "sell" today, following Wednesday's better-than-anticipated quarterly earnings results. (Raymond James, however, cut the stock to "underperform" from "market perform.") The equity has climbed more than 26% so far this year, yet there is still plenty of bearish speculation surrounding BIG. Short interest surged by over 11% during the most recent reporting period, and now accounts for a hefty 20% of the security's available float. It would take roughly four days to unwind these pessimistic bets, at the stock's average daily trading volume.

  • Up more than 40% year-to-date, CELG scored a price-target hike to $128 from $123 at Lazard ahead of the opening bell. The stock has also bested the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by close to 29 percentage points during past three months, which could be attracting call players. In fact, CELG's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio sits at 3.85, confirming calls bought to open have nearly quadrupled puts during the last two weeks. This ratio arrives in the 55th annual percentile, reflecting a slightly healthier-than-usual appetite for calls over puts.

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