Intel, Sarepta Therapeutics, Palo Alto Networks Downgraded

Shares of Intel, Sarepta Therapeutics, and Palo Alto Networks are under the gun from analysts

Josh Selway
Mar 1, 2017 at 9:23 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on Dow stock Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), drugmaker Sarepta Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:SRPT), and cybersecurity expert Palo Alto Networks Inc (NYSE:PANW). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on INTC, SRPT, and PANW shares.

Competition Concerns Weigh On Intel

Last week, analysts advised selling NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) and buying INTC. Bernstein, however, is taking a different approach, downgrading Intel Corporation to "underperform" from "market perform," and slashing its price target to $30 from $36, citing increased competition from NVDA and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.(NASDAQ:AMD). Bernstein analysts wrote, "We believe INTC is facing structural headwinds as datacenter weakens, quality growth becomes more elusive, and competition increases."

In the meantime, Intel Corporation shares are set to open 1.1% lower after closing Tuesday at $36.20, though they should remain atop the recently supportive 200-day moving average. Most analysts remain bullish on the stock, too, with 18 of 29 calling it a "buy" or better."

Quarterly Results Hit Sarepta Therapeutics

Analysts are cutting their price targets on SRPT, after the company's unimpressive fourth-quarter earnings report. Jefferies and Leerink both lowered their targets to $27, while RBC reduced its price target to $91 -- well above Tuesday's close at $31.11. Also weighing on the stock -- which is down 7% in electronic trading -- is the firm's 2017 forecast for Exondys 51, its only drug. Still, Sarepta Therapeutics Inc could find familiar support at the $28 level, which is roughly two times its year-over-year breakeven level. Options traders at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) seem very bullish, as nearly 5,000 calls were bought to open during the past two weeks, compared to just 624 puts. 

Analysts Pan Palo Alto Networks After Revenue Miss

PANW is down 20% ahead of the bell, putting the shares on pace for their lowest open since early July, after fiscal second-quarter revenue came in lower than expected. A bevy of bearish analyst attention has since come through, with Morgan Stanley, Wunderlich, William Blair, and J.P. Morgan Securities all cutting their ratings to the equivalent of a "hold." At $151.90, Palo Alto Networks Inc was enjoying a strong start to 2017, but its gains are set to evaporate shortly, which is fine with short sellers. Short interest jumped by 20% during the last two reporting periods, and is now at an all-time high. At PANW's average daily volumes, it'd take these bears more than a week to buy back their positions. 

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