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Analyst Downgrades: Dendreon Corporation, Weight Watchers, and Whole Foods Market

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings on DNDN, WTW, and WFM

by 2/14/2013 9:38 AM
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Analysts are weighing in today on biotech concern Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN - 6.24), dieting issue Weight Watchers International, Inc. (NYSE:WTW 43.66), and grocery guru Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM 88.92). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes.

  • Maxim Group downgraded its opinion of DNDN to "sell" from "hold" this morning, joining the majority of analysts in the bearish camp. Currently, the stock boasts just two "buy" or better ratings, compared to 17 "hold" or worse suggestions. Plus, the consensus 12-month price target on the equity stands at $6.24, representing a discount to DNDN's closing price of $6.39 on Wednesday. However, this skepticism seems somewhat overdone, considering DNDN has outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by 39 percentage points during the past three months. Off the charts, the company has a big couple of weeks ahead, including a Provenge-related presentation at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Genitourinary Cancers Symposium, which kicks off today, and earnings on Feb. 25. In early trading, DNDN has shed 2.4%.

  • Elsewhere, WTW was slapped with a slew of price-target cuts, after the firm offered weaker-than-expected full-year guidance. Specifically, Barclays, J.P. Morgan Securities, and Wedbush slashed their respective price targets to $50, $43, and $42. Elsewhere on Wall Street, near-term options traders are likely celebrating the stock's drop. The security's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.81 indicates that puts nearly double calls among options expiring within three months. What's more, this ratio stands just 4 percentage points from a 52-week peak, implying that near-term traders have rarely been more put-heavy during the past year. Right out of the gate, WTW has plummeted 19.3%

  • Finally, lackluster sales data has triggered bearish brokerage notes for WFM, with J.P. Morgan Securities and Suntrust Robinson trimming their respective price targets to $103 and $105. From a broader sentiment standpoint, negative analyst attention is relatively rare for WFM. The stock boasts 15 "strong buys" and two "buy" endorsements, compared to seven lukewarm "holds" and not a single "sell" or worse rating. In the first few minutes of trading, WFM is down 8.3%

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