Analyst Upgrades: Schlumberger Limited, Pandora Media Inc, and Staples, Inc.

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Schlumberger Limited (SLB), Pandora Media Inc (P), and Staples, Inc. (SPLS)

May 23, 2016 at 9:28 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on oil-and-gas stock Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB), streaming music concern Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P), and office supply retailer Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on SLB, P, and SPLS.

  • SLB is pointed 0.7% higher this morning, after Goldman Sachs added the stock to its "Conviction Buy" list, saying "We believe SLB is differentially positioned within the oilfield services industry, which should lead to market share gains for it." At present, 74% of analysts recommend buying Schlumberger Limited, which settled at $74.96 on Friday. The shares have found solid support at their 100-day moving average since late February, and options traders appear to be eyeing a breakout, abandoning their recently bearish stance. Specifically, the stock's 10-day call/put volume ratio on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) sits at 1.82 -- higher than 89% of the past year's readings.

  • P is set to add 1.7% at the open after finishing Friday at $10.77. B. Riley raised its rating on the stock to "buy" from "neutral," but the brokerage bunch as a whole has been wary of late. Of the 26 analysts providing coverage, 16 say Pandora Media Inc is merely a "hold." The shares are off nearly 20% in 2016, but while the $11 level continues to be trouble for the stock, P broke out above long-standing resistance at its 120-moving average last week. The shares could be in for more gains should short sellers hit the bricks -- 22.2% of the equity's available float remains tied up in these bearish positions, accounting for more than a week's worth of trading, at P's typical daily trading pace.

  • SPLS is up 3.1% ahead of the bell following an upgrade to "buy" from BofA-Merrill Lynch and a report in London's Sunday Times that the company is contacting possible buyout firms for its European assets. Staples, Inc. closed Friday at $8.10 -- just off a 13-year low of $8.00, seen Thursday. The shares took a hard fall earlier this month after the company's merger attempt with Office Depot Inc (NASDAQ:ODP) ​was shut down, and the stock's short-term option traders have taken an especially dim view. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) now sits at an annual high of 2.76 -- showing puts nearly tripling calls among options expiring in three months or less.
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