Analyst Downgrades: Apple Inc., Baidu Inc, and American Express Company

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU), and American Express Company (NYSE:AXP)

by Karee Venema

Published on Jul 21, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Analysts are weighing in on iPhone maker Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Chinese internet issue Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU), and financial stock American Express Company (NYSE:AXP). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on AAPL, BIDU, and AXP.

  • Despite one analyst's prediction that Pokemon Go could add billions to AAPL's bottom line, BMO lowered its price target on the stock to $116 from $118. Still, AAPL hasn't traded north of $116 since mid-December, and was last seen at $100.19 -- down 20% on a year-over-year basis. Should the shares continue to struggle -- perhaps in the wake of another negative earnings reaction following next Tuesday night's results -- there's plenty of room for a fresh round of bearish brokerage notes to apply additional pressure. Currently, 84% of analysts maintain a "buy" or better rating on Apple Inc., while the average 12-month price target stands at a lofty $122.73.

  • Credit Suisse cut its price target on BIDU to $190 from $245. While the stock is up 0.7% at $161.78 this morning, it's longer-term trajectory has been decidedly lower. In fact, shares of BIDU have shed almost one-fifth of their value since hitting a year-to-date high of $201 in late April -- most recently due to a number of fundamental woes. On the sentiment front, short-term speculators are more put-heavy now toward BIDU than they've been at any other point over the past year. Specifically, the equity's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.17 is docked above all other comparable readings taken in the past year. This put-skewed backdrop comes as Baidu Inc prepares to tell all in the earnings confessional after next Thursday's close.

  • AXP beat second-quarter earnings estimates, thanks to the sale of its Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) credit card portfolio. And while Bernstein raised its price target on AXP to $83 from $77, the stock received price-target cuts from J.P. Morgan Securities (to $65) and BMO (to $73). As such, the shares were last seen 2% lower at $63.19. Longer term, AXP is off 20% year-over-year -- and is facing stiff historical headwinds -- with recent rallies quickly halted by the stock's descending 200-day moving average. Against this backdrop, most analysts are skeptical of American Express Company, with 19 out of 23 maintaining a "hold" or worse rating on the stock.
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