KR, SQ, NKE Stocks Downgraded Today

Square stock is trying to hold support on the charts

Josh Selway
Jun 16, 2017 at 9:29 AM
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Analysts are weighing in on grocery giant Kroger Co (NYSE:KR), payments processor Square Inc (NYSE:SQ), and Dow stock Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on shares of KR, SQ, and NKE.

KR Stock Set for Another Tumultuous Day 

Kroger stock got crushed yesterday, after the company' lackluster earnings forecast. Now, more bearish analyst notes are pouring in, with at least nine brokerage firms weighing in on KR shares. For example, Telsey Advisory downgraded the stock to "market perform" from "outperform," and lowered its price target to $29. Kroger received similar downgrades to "neutral" from Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan Securities.

The shares hit a nearly three-year low of $24.37 yesterday before settling at $24.56, and they're down another 2% ahead of the open. More bearish analyst attention is a possibility, too, since the majority of analysts actually had "strong buy" or "buy" ratings on KR stock as of yesterday's close. 

**Updated: Amid news that Amazon is buying Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, grocery stocks are getting hammered, with Kroger stock last seen 12.8% lower at $21.42. 

Square Stock Downgraded at Credit Suisse

Square stock is down 1.4% ahead of the open, after Credit Suisse downgraded the shares to "neutral" from "outperform," though it also raised its price target to $25 from $20. SQ has pulled back from its all-time high of $24.97 from last week amid the broader tech swoon, but yesterday found support at its 20-day moving average -- a trendline is hasn't breached on a closing basis since mid-April. In fact, Square still sports a year-to-date lead of 76%, closing yesterday at $23.99. 

In the meantime, options traders have been very bullish on Jack Dorsey's company. For example, more than 20,000 call options have been bought to open during the past two weeks at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), compared to fewer than 4,000 puts. 

Struggles Persist for NKE Stock

J.P. Morgan Securities downgraded Nike stock to "neutral" from "overweight," and cut its price target to $58 from $61, after the shoe company yesterday announced a corporate restructuring. NKE shares have shed 2% in pre-market trading, as they continue to fall further from their year-to-date high of $59 from March 21, finishing Thursday's session at $52.90. Nike stock is also vulnerable to additional bear notes, since 15 analysts give it a "strong buy" rating, and its average 12-month price target stands at $62.28. 


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