Analyst Upgrades: Fitbit, Level 3, Nuance Communications

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings on Fitbit Inc (FIT), Level 3 Communications, Inc. (LVLT), and Nuance Communications Inc. (NUAN)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Nov 17, 2015 at 10:14 AM
Updated on Jul 20, 2020 at 4:30 PM

Analysts are weighing in on health device maker Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT), telecom concern Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NYSE:LVLT), and software developer Nuance Communications Inc. (NASDAQ:NUAN). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on FIT, LVLT, and NUAN.

  • A pair of top FIT executives recently exercised options to buy shares of the fitness device marketer. That news, combined with an upgrade to "buy" from "neutral" at BofA-Merrill Lynch, has the stock up 4.2% at $29.98 -- as it seeks to take back its recently surrendered perch atop the $30 level. As recently as last Friday, however, Fitbit Inc touched a record low of $26.80, and plenty of investors see further downside ahead. A lofty 42.6% of the stock's float is sold short. Plus, during the past two weeks, traders at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have bought to open 2.26 puts for every call.
  • LVLT is up 0.3% at $51.09, after Moffett Nathanson boosted its price target to $56 from $54. This is more of the same from the brokerage crowd, which has handed out 11 "buy" or better endorsements versus four "holds" and not a single "sell." Along similar lines, Level 3 Communications, Inc.'s consensus 12-month price target of $60.21 stands at a nearly 18% premium to the current price. On the charts, the shares have been battling back since bottoming out at $40.86 in late September, rallying 25% to present levels -- and last month overtaking their 120-day moving average, which has subsequently served as technical support.
  • NUAN has rocketed 13.6% higher to trade at $19.41 on better-than-expected quarterly results and upbeat guidance. This has earned the applause of analysts, with no fewer than five firms doling out price-target hikes -- and Craig-Hallum setting the bar highest, at $23. Earlier, in fact, Nuance Communications Inc. shot to an annual peak of $19.54. This show of technical strength may not have been what options traders were looking for. NUAN's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.42 stands just 14 percentage points from a 12-month high, suggesting a healthier-than-usual appetite for bearish bets over bullish.
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