Analyst Upgrades: Apple Inc., AstraZeneca plc, and Ctrip.com International, Ltd.

Analysts upwardly revised their ratings and price targets on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN), and Ctrip.com International, Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:CTRP)

Nov 25, 2016 at 9:24 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on iPhone maker Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), drugmaker AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN), and online travel stock Ctrip.com International, Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:CTRP). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on AAPL, AZN, and CTRP.

  • Drexel Hamilton weighed in on AAPL, saying "We believe Apple remains one of the best positioned tech companies to benefit from spending trends this holiday season." The analysts highlighted the latest iPhone, Apple Watch, and MacBook Pro in their note. Meanwhile, Macy's Inc's (NYSE:M) CEO Terry Lundgren this morning on CNBC said the Apple Watch and other high-end tech products have been selling very well, while data from Adobe Systems Incorporated (NASDAQ:ADBE) indicated the iPad was one of the best-selling products in Thursday's online shopping. Shares of Apple Inc. lost some steam following their most recent high of $118.69 on Oct. 11, but found support at the 120-day moving average -- closing Wednesday at $111.23. Meanwhile, options traders have remained bullish. AAPL's 10-day call/put volume ratio at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) comes in at 1.79, topping 69% of the past year's readings. 

  • AZN is set to add 2.8% this morning, following an upgrade to "buy" from "hold" at Liberum -- which cited a positive risk/reward setup. The stock was badly in need of a positive catalyst, as the shares have fallen precipitously since their August high near $35 to trade at $26.37. Plus, AZN hit a three-year low of $25.88 on Wednesday. Short interest has boomed in the meantime. During the last two reporting periods, short interest on AstraZeneca plc jumped by 11.3%, and now stands near the highest levels seen since mid-August. 

  • CTRP on Wednesday posted quarterly earnings, and also announced the purchase of travel search website Skyscanner Holdings for $1.74 billion. The shares are now pointed 10.1% higher in pre-market trading, looking to pare their nearly 23% year-over-year decline, closing Wednesday at $40.99. Analysts appear upbeat, as HSBC upgraded Ctrip.com International, Ltd. to "buy" from "hold," and was one of at least three brokerage firms to raise its price target, setting it at $53. This is nothing new, though, since all eight covering brokerage firms recommend buying CTRP. 
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