Analyst Upgrades: Visa Inc, JD.Com Inc (ADR), and Autodesk, Inc.

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on V, JD, and ADSK

by Karee Venema

Published on Nov 18, 2014 at 9:19 AM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Analysts are weighing in today on credit card giant Visa Inc (NYSE:V), Beijing-based Internet issue JD.Com Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:JD), and application software firm Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ:ADSK). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on V, JD, and ADSK.

  • In the wake of announcing a prepaid card partnership with Wirecard AG, V saw its price target lifted to $290 from $270 at SunTrust Robinson, with the brokerage firm underscoring its "buy" rating. This upbeat outlook echoes the general consensus of analysts covering the stock, with 83% maintaining a "buy" or "strong buy" rating toward the equity, and not a single "sell" to be found. Additionally, the consensus 12-month price target of $257.91 stands in territory yet to be charted. However, V has been making a string of higher highs since it reported strong quarterly earnings in late October, and tagged a record peak of $252.43 on Nov. 7. Yesterday, Visa Inc settled at $249.80, up 12.2% on the year.

  • Deutsche Bank upped its price target on JD to $27.40 from $26.60 -- and reiterated its "hold" rating -- after the stock plunged 7.4% yesterday in the wake of its mixed third-quarter earnings report. Overall, however, JD.Com Inc (ADR) has performed well since going public in late May, with the shares up roughly 15% to trade at $25.00, thanks in part to a boost from last week's "Singles Day" shopping extravaganza. In spite of this, sentiment is skewed toward the skeptical side. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), for example, option traders have bought to open 1.71 puts for every call during the past two weeks. Elsewhere, nearly 14% of the stock's float is sold short, and it would take almost eight sessions to cover these bearish bets, at average daily trading levels.

  • Ahead of Thursday evening's earnings report, ADSK's price target was raised to $73 from $65 at Cowen and Company, with the brokerage firm maintaining its "outperform" rating. This optimism isn't too surprising, considering ADSK has rallied more than 17% year-to-date to trade at $58.99, and on Friday, hit the $59.89 mark -- its highest perch on record. If history is any guide, the stock could be poised to extend its quest into record-high territory after it unveils its fiscal third-quarter results, considering ADSK has averaged a single-session post-earnings gain of 1.6% over the past four quarters. An unwinding of skepticism in the options pits could also help propel the shares higher. At present, Autodesk, Inc.'s 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.55 ranks higher than 76% of similar readings taken in the past year, meaning puts have been bought to open over calls at an accelerated clip in recent weeks.

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