Analyst Update: SolarCity Corp, Twitter Inc, and Freeport-McMoRan Inc

Analysts adjusted their ratings and price targets on SolarCity Corp (SCTY), Twitter Inc (TWTR), and Freeport-McMoRan Inc (FCX)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Feb 23, 2016 at 12:06 PM

Analysts are weighing in on alternative energy issue SolarCity Corp (NASDAQ:SCTY), microblogging platform Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), and miner Freeport-McMoRan Inc (NYSE:FCX). Here's a quick roundup of today's brokerage notes on SCTY, TWTR, and FCX.

  • SCTY is off 1.7% today at $18.75, pressured by a downgrade to "neutral" from "overweight" at J.P. Morgan Securities -- which also slashed its price target to $29 from $44. All in all, the solar stock has gotten hammered since hitting $58.87 in mid-December, losing 68.2%. If this trend lower continues, additional downgrades could come down the pike. Over two-thirds of analysts tracking SolarCity Corp rate it a "buy" or better, with not one brokerage firm designating it a "sell." By contrast, short sellers are betting against SCTY, as 42.5% of its float is sold short.
  • TWTR has edged 1.4% higher to trade at $18.55, boosted by an upgrade to "outperform" from "market perform" at Raymond James. As such, the shares are on track to close above their 40-day moving average for the first time since early November. In the options pits, traders have been betting against Twitter Inc at an extreme clip. Specifically, the stock's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio rests at an annual high of 0.77. In other words, option traders have bought to open puts over calls at the most rapid rate seen in the last 12 months.
  • FCX was downgraded to "sell" from "neutral" at Citigroup, which said the company's planned asset sales could damage its net asset value, amid a backdrop of weak commodity prices. As such, the stock is down 8.6% at $7.25, after yesterday failing to topple its 100-day moving average for the third time since October -- despite a massive rally among miners. Freeport-McMoRan Inc option traders have been blazing a bearish path toward the underperformer. Specifically, the stock's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.01 outstrips 90% of all other readings taken in the last year. Likewise, during the last two reporting periods, short interest jumped almost 44% on FCX, and now represents 17.8% of its total float.
For other stocks in analysts' crosshairs, read Analyst Upgrades: Barrick Gold Corporation, Cheniere Energy, Inc., and Himax Technologies, Inc. and Analyst Downgrades: Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc., Chimerix Inc, and Palo Alto Networks Inc.

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