Analyst Update: Enphase Energy, Herbalife, and Visa

Analysts adjusted their ratings on Enphase Energy Inc (NASDAQ:ENPH), Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF), and Visa Inc (NYSE:V)

Nov 4, 2015 at 1:43 PM
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Analysts are weighing in today on solar tech concern Enphase Energy Inc (NASDAQ:ENPH), nutritional supplement specialist Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF), and credit card maven Visa Inc (NYSE:V). Here's a quick roundup of today's brokerage notes on ENPH, HLF, and V.

  • ENPH has had a rough day, last seen trading down 37.6% at $2.32 -- and just off a three-year low of $2.17 -- after the company reported earnings. Enphase Energy Inc fell short of third-quarter sales forecasts, and offered lackluster current-quarter guidance, sparking downgrades to "neutral" from "buy" at Roth Capital, and to "hold" from "buy" at Canaccord Genuity. ENPH also received price-target cuts to $3 from $4.50 at Roth, to $3.30 from $9 at Canaccord, and to $5 from $10 at Cowen and Company. The shares currently sit at an 83.8% loss year-to-date. While ENPH has landed on the short-sale restricted (SSR) list today, plenty of traders were already betting against the stock, with over 18% of its float sold short -- representing over eight days of trading, at typical volumes. The options pits paint a different picture, however, with a 50-day call/put volume ratio of 34.0 on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), ranking in the 93rd percentile of all readings taken in the last 52 weeks, indicating calls are being bought over puts at a faster-than-usual rate.

  • HLF has garnered some extra attention recently, getting caught up in the Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX) drama, and last night reporting quarterly earnings. While Herbalife Ltd. raised its full-year guidance, third-quarter sales missed Wall Street's mark. HLF was last seen trading at $55.20, down 4.6%, as traders adopt a glass-half-empty approach. Meanwhile, Canaccord Genuity bumped its target up to $61 from $58, while Pivotal Research Group cut its target to $85 from $100. So far this year, Herbalife has added 46.1%, yet option buyers have taken a distinctly bearish view on the company. HLF currently sports a 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.86, higher than all but 5% of readings in the past year. Plus, more than 28% of its float is sold short, which would take about 22 sessions to repurchase, at the equity's average daily trading volume. Should HLF traders sing a rosier tune on guidance, a mass exodus of option bears or a short squeeze could propel the stock higher. 

  • V was last seen up 0.7% at $78.43, within striking distance of its all-time high of $78.89, tagged late last month. The credit card giant has gained 19.6% year-to-date, and recently announced plans to buy Visa Europe in a $23 billion deal. While the shares dipped post-earnings, they bounced back with a vengeance yesterday, leading the Dow higher. Helping usher Visa Inc higher today, BofA-Merrill Lynch increased its price target to $85 from $78 -- in uncharted territory. What's more, a short squeeze could help V extend its quest for new highs; short interest represents 11 days' of pent-up buying demand, at the stock's average pace of trading.

For other stocks in analysts' crosshairs, read Analyst Upgrades:  Zynga Inc, Plug Power Inc, and WebMD Health Corp. and Analyst Downgrades: Groupon Inc, MannKind Corporation, and DSW Inc.

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