Analyst Downgrades: Groupon Inc, Statoil ASA, and Blackstone Group LP

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings on coupon concern Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN), energy issue Statoil ASA (ADR) (NYSE:STO), and investment firm Blackstone Group LP (NYSE:BX)

by Karee Venema

Published on Oct 8, 2015 at 9:44 AM
Updated on Oct 8, 2015 at 9:44 AM

Analysts are weighing in on coupon concern Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN), energy issue Statoil ASA (ADR) (NYSE:STO), and investment firm Blackstone Group LP (NYSE:BX). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on GRPN, STO, and BX.

  • GRPN is down 4% at the open to trade at $3.62, after Cowen and Company initiated coverage on the stock with an "underperform" rating and a $2.75 price target -- territory not charted since November 2012. Longer term, shares of Groupon Inc have surrendered nearly three-fifths of their value in 2015, hitting an Oct. 1 two-year low of $3.17 along the way. There's still plenty of room on GRPN's bearish bandwagon, though. Specifically, seven analysts maintain a "strong buy" recommendation on the stock, leaving the door wide open for a round of downgrades -- which could pressure the shares to lower lows.

  • Ahead of news that STO has uncovered an oil spill in the North Sea, the stock saw its price target dropped to NOK 136 from NOK 155 at SocGen. The shares have dropped 0.4% out of the gate to $17.31, bringing their year-to-date deficit to 1.7%. Similar to sector peer Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), call buyers have been flooding the equity's options pits. Specifically, Statoil ASA's 50-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 11.77 ranks in the 90th annual percentile. In other words, calls have been bought to open over puts at a faster clip just 10% of the time within the past year.

  • BX confirmed that it is indeed purchasing real estate investment trust Biomed Realty Trust Inc (NYSE:BMR) in an all-cash deal valued at around $8 billion. The news was met with negative reactions on Wall Street, with BX receiving price-target cuts from Barclays (to $40) and JMP Securities (to $43). On the charts, Blackstone Group LP has tacked on roughly 2% in 2015 to trade at $33.89, but is staring up at its descending 60-day moving average. Off the charts, the company is slated to report earnings one week from today, and option traders are bracing for the worst. At the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX, BX's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.63 sits just 8 percentage points from a 52-week peak.
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