SQ, MEET, and HLT Stocks Get Bullish Analyst Notes

Hilton has been experiencing heavy call trading ahead of earnings

Jul 19, 2018 at 10:02 AM
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U.S. stocks are mostly trading lower this morning, but analysts have weighed in bullishly on Square Inc (NYSE:SQ), Meet Group Inc (NASDAQ:MEET), and Hilton Hotels Corporation (NYSE:HLT). We'll take a closer look at the analyst attention on SQ, MEET, and HLT below, and how the shares are responding on the charts.

SQ Shares Hit Record High

Square stock received two big price-target hikes this morning, with Credit Suisse lifting its target to $81 from $44 -- while also upgrading the equity to "outperform" from "neutral" -- and Morgan Stanley lifted its price target to $75 from $43. Credit Suisse cited the company's growing ecosystem of products and a large addressable market, while Morgan Stanley waxed optimistic on the U.S. payments sector as a whole.

As a result, SQ shares are up 1.3% to trade at $69.20, and earlier hit a fresh record high of $70.66. The shares have gained roughly 160% in the past year, with every brief pullback proving to be an excellent buying opportunity.

MEET Stock Gets Upgraded

Canaccord Genuity upgraded MEET stock to "buy" from "hold" and doubled its price target to $6 from $3, saying the social networking company has completely overhauled itself compared to a year ago. The analyst said the changes should make Meet Group's business more stable and allow for increased revenue over time.

The stock is rallying in response to the bullish attention, last seen up 11.8% at $4.62. It's been a strong run for the shares since they bottomed below $2 back in April, and short sellers could be sweating, since 10% of the equity's float is sold short.

Hilton Calls Remain Hot Before Earnings

Hilton shares are down 0.6% at $82.45, even though Berenberg upgraded the stock to "buy" from "hold" and raised its price target to $94 from $78. The security may simply be letting off some steam after a big rally in yesterday's session that was met with heavy call activity. Leading the way were the August 85 and 90 calls, thanks to a few large spread trades.

For the record, call buying has historically been very popular on HLT, according to its 50-day call/put volume ratio of 8.04 across the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) -- ranking in the 99th annual percentile. The hotel operator is scheduled to report earnings next Wednesday, July 25.

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