Analyst Downgrades: Apple, Marvell Technology, Qualcomm

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings on Apple Inc. (AAPL), Marvell Technology Group Ltd. (MRVL), and QUALCOMM, Inc. (QCOM)

Aug 5, 2015 at 9:29 AM
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Analysts are weighing in today on blue chip Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), semiconductor stock Marvell Technology Group Ltd. (NASDAQ:MRVL), and tech titan QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on AAPL, MRVL, and QCOM.

  • As expected, analysts are starting to change their tune on AAPL, following five straight days of losses -- putting the stock within one session of its longest losing streak since last October. Specifically, BofA-Merrill Lynch downgraded its rating to "neutral" from "buy," citing a deceleration in iPhone sales and a slowdown in China. Option traders appear to be growing increasingly bearish, too, as Apple Inc. saw a record number of puts cross the tape yesterday. In fact, the equity's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio stands at an annual high of 0.68. As alluded to, AAPL's technical picture is bleak, making this skepticism understandable. Since its most recent high of $132.97 on July 20, the stock has plunged 13.8% -- and breached its 200-day trendline -- settling at $114.64 yesterday. Ahead of the open, AAPL is off 1%.

  • MRVL is up 1.6% in electronic trading, a day after a U.S. appeals court reduced the damages payment the company owes to Carnegie Mellon University for patent infringement. Elsewhere, Marvell Technology Group Ltd. is on the receiving end of mixed brokerage attention. On the one hand, Citigroup upped its endorsement to "neutral"; on the other, FBR slashed its price target to $17 from $20. Turning to the charts, it's been a rough year for the shares, which have lost 15.4% to trade at $12.26. Nonetheless, option traders have been rolling the dice on a rebound.  MRVL's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 27.46 sits just 3 percentage points from a 12-month peak.

  • BMO cut its price target on QCOM to $72 from $74, which is understandable, given its technical performance. Year-to-date, the security has shed almost 15% to rest at $63.45, and has seen a pair of recent rally attempts rejected at its 40-day moving average. Additional negative analyst attention could come down the pike, as well. Over half of the analysts tracking QUALCOMM, Inc. still consider it a "buy" or better, and its consensus 12-month price target of $71.72 stands at a 13% premium to Tuesday's close. In other words, QCOM is vulnerable to future downgrades and/or additional price-target reductions.

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