Analyst Update: Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc, Splunk Inc, and Trina Solar Limited

Analysts revised their ratings and price targets on Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc (IONS), Splunk Inc (SPLK), and Trina Solar Limited (ADR) (TSL)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on May 27, 2016 at 3:05 PM

Analysts are weighing in on drugmaker Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:IONS), tech stock Splunk Inc (NASDAQ:SPLK), and alternative energy issue Trina Solar Limited (ADR) (NYSE:TSL). Here's a quick roundup of today's brokerage notes on IONS, SPLK, and TSL.

  • IONS is up 3.6% at $22.14, bouncing back sharply after earlier hitting a two-year low of $19.59. The initial plunge was triggered by a downgrade to "market perform" from "outperform" at BMO, which also cut its price target to $26 from $55 -- with three other analysts downwardly revising their target prices, as well. Of course, all of this follows Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc's colossal tumble yesterday, after a planned drug trial was put out to pasture due to safety concerns. With the stock's 14-day Relative Strength Index (RSI) still in oversold territory, at 25.3, additional gains could be on the near horizon.

    However, put buying has been transpiring at an extreme level in recent weeks, so options traders probably aren't thrilled with the prospect of an extended bounce. Specifically, IONS' 50-day put/call volume ratio of 0.14 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) -- while call-skewed from an absolute standpoint -- represents a 12-month high.

  • SPLK has tacked on 3% to trade at $56.56, boosted by a well-received earnings report. Specifically, no fewer than nine analysts have lifted their price targets on the stock, with Maxim setting the highest bar, at $75 -- near the shares' annual peak of $76.85 from last July. Of course, the brokerage crowd was already in Splunk Inc's bullish camp, prior to last night's earnings release. Twenty of 24 analysts rate the stock a "buy" or better, with not a single one handing out a "sell" opinion.

  • Unlike this sector peer, TSL is getting rocked, down over 6% at $8.17. Sparking the plunge was a poorly received earnings report. Deutsche Bank slashed its recommendation to "hold" and its price target to $9, while Cowen lowered its price target to $11 -- more of the same for the technical underperformer. Options traders have likewise displayed a bearish bias of late toward Trina Solar LImited. The solar stock's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.67 sits just 11 percentage points from an annual high. Year-to-date, TSL is now sitting on a deficit of almost 26%.

For other stocks in analysts' crosshairs, read Analyst Upgrades: Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc., Vivint Solar Inc, and Veeva Systems Inc and Analyst Downgrades: Palo Alto Networks Inc, Deckers Outdoor Corp, and SolarCity Corp.


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