Analyst Downgrades: Freshpet Inc, Gulfport Energy Corporation, and Zafgen Inc

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Freshpet Inc (FRPT), Gulfport Energy Corporation (GPOR), and Zafgen Inc (ZFGN)

Mar 10, 2016 at 9:52 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on pet food specialist Freshpet Inc (NASDAQ:FRPT), oil-and-gas stock Gulfport Energy Corporation (NASDAQ:GPOR), and biotech issue Zafgen Inc (NASDAQ:ZFGN). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on FRPT, GPOR, and ZFGN.

  • Suntrust Robinson and Baird both cut their price targets on FRPT to $10, while Stifel raised its price target on the stock by $1 to $10, after the company reported strong fourth-quarter earnings Wednesday night. Freshpet Inc also announced yesterday that CEO Richard Thompson will retire by July 1. The stock hit a record low of $5.60 in early February, and ahead of last night's earnings report, traders were betting on more downside to come. More than 36% of FRPT's total available float is sold short, representing 15.7 times the stock's average daily volume. FRPT is shaking off the analyst snubs today, with the stock trading 9.7% higher at $7.73 -- following in the bullish post-earnings footsteps of rival Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc (NASDAQ:BUFF) .
  • GPOR is down 4.2% at $25.36,  after the energy firm last night priced its expanded 14.7 million share offering at $25.25 -- a discount to Wednesday's close at $26.47. In response, Topeka Capital today dropped its price target on the stock to $36 from $38. Gulfport Energy Corporation has recovered a bit from its three-year low of $20.21 in December, but remains down nearly 44% year-over-year. An unwinding of bullish sentiment from the option pits could weigh on the stock. On the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), traders have bought to open 3.41 GPOR calls for each put over the past two weeks -- a ratio that ranks in the 72nd percentile of its annual range.
  • ZFGN reported a wider-than-predicted fourth-quarter loss last night, prompting Canaccord Genuity to cut its rating on the stock to "hold" from "buy," and slash its price target to $7 from $30. RBC and Leerink also lowered their price targets on Zafgen Inc, to $19 and $6, respectively. ZFGN, down 9.8% at $5.81 today, has spent most of its time churning sideways between $5.50 and $7.50 following its early December bear gap. And while short sellers have been backing off -- short interest dropped by 21% during the last two-week reporting period --  about 27% of ZFGN's total float is still wrapped up in these bearish bets.
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