Analyst Downgrades: Caterpillar Inc., BlackBerry Ltd, and Micron Technology, Inc.

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings on Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY), and Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU)

by Karee Venema

Published on Sep 28, 2015 at 10:14 AM

Analysts are weighing in on construction concern Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY), and semiconductor firm Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on CAT, BBRY, and MU.

  • CAT has picked up right where it left off last week, with the shares down 1.9% at $63.73 -- and fresh off a five-year low of $63.61 -- after William Blair downgraded the stock to "market perform" from "outperform." Also weighing in on the equity were Jefferies and Deutsche Bank, which lowered their respective price targets to $63 and $80. Longer term, Caterpillar Inc. has surrendered roughly 30% in 2015, and option traders have been rolling the dice on more downside. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), for example, CAT's 50-day put/call volume ratio of 2.04 ranks just 8 percentage points from a 52-week peak.

  • BBRY tumbled to a new annual low of $6.19 today, as analysts continued to chime in following last Friday's earnings report. Included in the bunch was UBS, which lowered its price target to $7.50 from $10, and BMO, which cut its target price to $7 from $9. It's been tough for the stock this year, shedding around 43%. However, the equity has recently found a foothold in the $6.30-to-$6.40 region, and was last seen at $6.30. In the options pits, BlackBerry Ltd's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 4.98 sits just 5 percentage points from a 52-week peak. In other words, calls have been bought to open over puts at a near-annual-high clip. With 19% of the equity's float sold short, though, some of this call buying could be of the protective kind.

  • Analysts continue to lower their outlooks on MU, and today, this resulted in price-target cuts from Cowen and Company (to $25) and UBS (to $20). As such, the shares have plummeted 3.4% to $14.41 -- widening their year-to-date deficit to 59%. In spite of this, option traders have bought to open calls over puts at the fastest pace of the year in recent weeks, per MU's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 6.74 -- an annual high. Should Micron Technology, Inc. continue its downward trajectory, an unwinding of these bullish bets could create additional headwinds for the shares.

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