Analyst Upgrades: Alphabet, Applied Materials, Barrick Gold

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT), and Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX)

Josh Selway
Feb 19, 2016 at 9:22 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on tech giant Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), semiconductor specialist Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT), and gold stock Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on GOOGL, AMAT, and ABX.

  • GOOGL is edging lower ahead of the open, even though MKM Partners this morning raised its price target to $950 from $940. For comparison, the tech stock's all-time high stands at just $810.35, which it reached on Feb. 2. Since then, though, Alphabet Inc has dropped 11.5% to hit $717.51, recently struggling with its 100-day moving average. Still, like MKM, the rest of Wall Street has remained upbeat. Thirty-two of 34 covering brokerage firms have at least a "buy" rating on GOOGL, and none call it a "sell." And at $925.07, the stock's average 12-month price target represents a 28.9% premium to its current perch. 

  • AMAT is storming higher in electronic trading after revealing impressive fiscal first-quarter earnings, while its current-quarter outlook also topped expectations. The stock is now pointed 8.6% higher, as the positive analyst notes pour in. No fewer than six brokerage firms upped their price targets, including Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, and Cowen and Company, which all set their targets at $23. On the charts, Applied Materials, Inc. has fought back since hitting a two-year low of $14.25 in August, up 20.5% at $17.17. In the meantime, speculators have shown bullish tendencies. AMAT's 50-day call/put volume ratio at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) stands at 8.18, only 3 percentage points from an annual high. 

  • With the shares 71.1% higher year-to-date at $12.63, analysts continue to turn their attention to ABX. The stock received at least six price-target hikes this morning, with a bump to $15 from $10 at Citigroup among the bunch. Mackie Research, meanwhile, lowered its opinion to "hold" from "buy." Despite the recent affection from the brokerage bunch, many traders apparently have a different opinion on Barrick Gold Corporation. Specifically, short interest surged on ABX by 58% during the two most recent reporting periods. 
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