Whirlpool Stock Nears New High After Upgrade

The brokerage firm said WHR's valuation is "Inexpensive"

Sep 26, 2019 at 9:58 AM
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J.P. Morgan Securities upgraded Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) to "overweight" from "neutral," citing stabilizing domestic shipments through the end of this year. The brokerage firm also said it sees WHR's "valuation as inexpensive," and set a 2020 price target of $172 -- $17 above its 2019 target price of $155. In reaction, the stock is up 2.7% to trade at $150.36.

Looking closer at the charts shows Whirlpool shares have been chopping higher in 2019, up 41% so far. The stock's most recent leg north was sparked by a mid-August bounce near its 200-day moving average, with WHR rallying all the way up to a 14-month high of $153.10 on Sept. 11. The security has since been consolidating atop the $148 region, which served as a ceiling in February and early July.

The majority of analysts are still skeptical of the home appliance manufacturer, with seven of eight maintaining a "hold" or "worse rating prior to today. Plus, the average 12-month price target of $149 is in line with current trading levels. This leaves the door open for more bull notes, should WHR continue to outperform on the charts.

Whirlpool stock is heavily shorted, too, which paves the way for bigger gains, should shorts continue to cover. While these bearish bets declined 13% in the most recent reporting period, the 4.4 million shares still sold short represents 7.2% of WHR's available float, or 6.4 times the average daily pace of trading.

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