Analyst Upgrades: eBay Inc, Facebook Inc (FB), and Southwest Airlines Co

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on EBAY, FB, and LUV

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Oct 27, 2014 at 9:00 AM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Analysts are weighing in today on online auction house eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY), social network Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), and aviation concern Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE:LUV). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on EBAY, FB, and LUV.

  • Monness Crespi Hardt initiated coverage on EBAY with a "buy" rating, despite the equity's 6.8% year-to-date loss. Technically speaking, the shares closed Friday at $51.12, and recently hit a two-year low of $46.34 after reporting lackluster earnings. In the options pits, short-term traders have been more put-focused than usual toward eBay Inc. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.73 ranks just 8 percentage points shy of a 52-week peak.

  • FB, which releases its highly anticipated earnings report tomorrow night, was also initiated at Monness Crespi Hardt with a "buy" recommendation, as well as a $95 price target. This outlook would represent a record high for the shares, which have tacked on nearly 48% year-to-date to trade at $80.67. Given such technical tenacity, it's no surprise Wall Street is bullishly aligned toward Facebook Inc. In fact, 29 out of 32 covering analysts have given the equity a "buy" or better rating, versus just three "holds" and not a single "sell" opinion.

  • Finally, LUV saw its price target raised to $37 from $32 at Credit Suisse, despite the brokerage firm maintaining its "neutral" assessment of the stock. On the charts, the shares have soared roughly 80% since the start of 2014 to rest at $33.87, and have outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by 16.7 percentage points over the last three months. In the options pits, traders are either betting on -- or hedging against -- downside in Southwest Airlines Co. Specifically, the security's 50-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 0.40 sits higher than 80% of comparable readings from the past year. In other words, speculators have been buying to open LUV puts over calls at a faster-than-usual clip in recent months.

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