Analyst Upgrades: Citigroup Inc, Facebook Inc, and J C Penney Company Inc

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C), Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), and J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE:JCP)

by Karee Venema

Published on Sep 28, 2015 at 9:29 AM
Updated on Sep 28, 2015 at 9:29 AM

Analysts are weighing in on financial firm Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C), social network issue Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), and department store chain J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE:JCP). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on C, FB, and JCP.

  • Credit Suisse upped its outlook on C to "outperform" from "neutral," echoing the sentiment of Jefferies, which boosted its rating to "buy" from "hold" (although simultaneously reducing its price target by $5 to $60). Specifically, Jefferies cited Citgroup Inc's attractive risk/reward ratio, long-term growth, and appealing capital return. Technically, it's been a lackluster year for C, which is down 6.6% at $50.55. While this trajectory has been more than noticed by options traders, analysts remain upbeat. In fact, 13 out of 16 brokerage firms maintain a "buy" or better rating on C, with not a single "sell" to be found.

  • Cowen and Company raised its price target on FB to $115 from $110, representing expected upside of 24% to last Friday's close at $92.77 -- and a trek into uncharted territory. The equity doesn't appear ready to capitalize on this bullish brokerage note, however, with shares of FB down 0.6% in electronic trading. This only echoes the equity's recent time on the charts, with Facebook Inc spending most of the month churning south of the $95-to-$96 region. In spite of this uninspiring price action, a number of analysts -- and option traders -- are holding out hope, with no less than 93% of those covering the shares maintaining a "buy" or better rating. Should the stock continue to struggle, a round of downgrades could translate into headwinds.

  • JCP saw its rating raised to "buy" from "neutral" at Sterne Agee CRT over the weekend, sending the shares up 2.3% in electronic trading. This expected price pop will only add to the equity's impressive 45% year-to-date advance, which had JCP closing at $9.43 on Friday. J C Penney Company remains surrounded by skeptics, though. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), for example, the stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.21 ranks in the 89th annual percentile. Simple stated, puts have been bought to open over calls at a near-annual-high clip.

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