Analyst Downgrades: Citigroup Inc, Novavax, Inc., and Oracle Corporation

Analysts downwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Citigroup Inc (C), Novavax, Inc. (NVAX), and Oracle Corporation (ORCL)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Sep 16, 2016 at 9:53 AM

Analysts are weighing in on big bank Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C), drugmaker Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ:NVAX), and tech stock Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on C, NVAX, and ORCL.

  • C has joined with its overseas banking peers, dropping 1.2% to trade at $46.51. Applying the pressure is Goldman Sachs, which cut its rating to a "neutral" from a "buy," and trimmed its price target to $50 from $52. Technically speaking, Citigroup Inc hasn't cleared the half-century level since early January, and has been consolidating in the $46-$47 zone for the past month. Meanwhile, options traders at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have been buying to open calls over puts at a near-extreme rate. C's 50-day call/put volume ratio of 2.48 ranks just 1 percentage point from a 12-month peak.
  • It's been a wild week for biotech stocks, and NVAX is the latest drugmaker to suffer a serious setback. The stock has dropped over 86% to $1.16 -- seven-year-low territory -- after the firm's experimental RSV vaccine failed in a late-stage study. At least four analysts have weighed in bearishly, including Piper Jaffray, which cut its rating to "neutral" from "overweight," and slashed its price target to $1 from $14. With Novavax, Inc. shares suffering their worst single-day loss ever, short sellers should be in celebration mode. Nearly one-quarter of the stock's float is sold short, translating to 13.8 times NVAX's typical daily volume.
  • ORCL is down 2.5% at $39.84, after the company's fiscal first-quarter earnings came up short of expectations. Adding insult to injury, BMO and RBC cut their respective price targets to $46 and $42, overshadowing a price-target hike to $45 at Nomura. Despite today's losses -- which should make these put buyers happy -- Oracle Corporation is still sitting on a healthy year-to-date lead of nearly 9%. On the other hand, some ex-short sellers could be kicking rocks. Specifically, short interest on ORCL dropped over 9% during the last two reporting periods, and represents just 1.2% of the equity's total float.
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