Analyst Upgrades: Google, Foot Locker, The Fresh Market

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on Google Inc (GOOGL), Foot Locker, Inc. (FL), and The Fresh Market Inc (TFM)

by Karee Venema

Published on Mar 6, 2015 at 9:20 AM
Updated on Jul 2, 2020 at 9:02 AM

Analysts are weighing in today on tech titan Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), athletic apparel retailer Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE:FL), and high-end grocer The Fresh Market Inc (NASDAQ:TFM). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on GOOGL, FL, and TFM.

  • Citigroup raised its price target on GOOGL to $682 from $629 -- and underscored its "buy" rating -- representing expected upside of 17.3% to last night's close at $581.43, as well as a move into territory yet to be charted. Technically speaking, the stock has been gaining ground since hitting an annual low of $490.91 in mid-January -- up 18.4% -- after announcing several big-time partnerships, most recently with Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT). Meanwhile, short-term speculators have shown a preference for calls over puts, as evidenced by Google Inc's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.81, which indicates call open interest outweighs put open interest among options slated to expire in three months or less.

  • To the dismay of options traders, FL is up 5% in electronic trading -- and poised for a new record high -- after the company's stronger-than-forecast fourth-quarter earnings report was met with a price-target hike to $65 from $63 at Deutsche Bank. On the charts, the stock has been a long-term outperformer, boasting a 33.5% year-over-year lead. Against this backdrop, most analysts maintain a "strong buy" rating on the shares -- 11 to be specific, versus four "holds" or worse. However, the average 12-month price target of $60.60 stands at a slim 6.3% premium to Thursday's settlement at $57.03, meaning more upwardly revised price targets could be on the horizon.

  • TFM received a bevy of bullish brokerage attention, after the grocery chain unveiled a fourth-quarter profit beat and encouraging guidance, and said it would shutter its remaining stores in California. Included in the bunch were BMO, which boosted its price target by $5 to $49, and J.P. Morgan Securities, which upped its target price to $46 from $44. Both brokerage firms underscored their equivalent of an "outperform" rating. After a slow start to the year, TFM has been making technical amends since bottoming out a year-to-date low of $35.51 on Feb. 10 -- up 11.6% at $39.63, thanks to a bounce off its 120-day moving average. Not everyone is convinced The Fresh Market Inc can sustain this momentum, though. Short interest jumped 7.7% in the most recent reporting period, and now accounts for roughly one-quarter of TFM's available float. What's more, it would take almost a month to cover these shorted shares, at the stock's average daily pace of trading. In electronic trading, TFM is pointed 5% higher.

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