Analyst Upgrades: Netflix, Inc., Cree, Inc., and Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd.

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on Netflix, Inc. (NFLX), Cree, Inc. (CREE), and Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd. (SLXP)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Jan 21, 2015 at 9:30 AM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Analysts are weighing in today on streaming content provider Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), LED specialist Cree, Inc. (NASDAQ:CREE), and drugmaker Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SLXP). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on NFLX, CREE, and SLXP.

  • NFLX is up almost 19% ahead of the bell, after last night's earnings beat prompted a rush of bullish brokerage attention. Specifically, no fewer than 13 analysts upped their price targets -- the most ambitious of which came from J.P. Morgan Securities, which raised its target to $511 from $450, and reiterated an "overweight" rating. This is good news for recent options traders, who have displayed optimism over the last couple of weeks. On the technical front, a sharp move higher would represent a break from Netflix, Inc.'s prevailing technical pattern, as the shares have advanced just 2.1% year-to-date to trade at $348.80.

  • CREE also topped the Street's expectations during its trip to the earnings confessional last night, and is pointed 4.4% higher this morning. Adding fuel to the equity's fire is a pair of price-target hikes from Susquehanna (to $31) and J.P. Morgan Securities (to $39). Technically speaking, Cree, Inc. has been a long-term laggard, shedding 48.5% of its value year-over-year to rest at $32.34. Not surprisingly, bearish betting has been popular on the stock. Nearly 18% of CREE's float is sold short -- which would take more than two weeks to cover, at typical daily trading levels -- and the equity's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 1.10 ranks in the 82nd percentile of its annual range.

  • Mizuho boosted its price target on SLXP to $124 from $103 -- and reiterated its "neutral" rating -- after news that the pharmaceutical firm is allegedly exploring strategic options, including a possible sale. On the charts, the shares have performed admirably, tacking on 25.8% over the last year to trade at $125.83 -- including a 4.7% surge yesterday following the aforementioned report. Despite this technical tenacity, 18% of Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd.'s float is sold short, which represents nearly seven days' worth of pent-up buying power, at typical daily trading volumes. If the stock can muscle higher, a short-covering rally could result.

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