Is a Slowdown Good? Analysts Upgrade or Downgrade Citigroup, Tesla and More

Markets were tentatively higher to start out the truncated trading week. Each of the major indexes edged higher to start the session, coming off of three straight weeks of losses and a decent showing from the August employment report.

According to the report, the U.S. economy added 315,000 jobs but the unemployment rate edged higher to 3.7%. While this slowdown may not look good to the average investor, the Federal Reserve may welcome it as the economy is beginning to cool off. Even though more interest rate hikes appear to be on the horizon, any slowdown is welcome to give as soft a landing as possible.

Be on the lookout for more inflation data next week in the form of the consumer price index. July demonstrated a slowing in the growth rate of inflation, but it remains to be seen if August can do any more and if the Fed’s monetary tightening policy is actually working.

Here, 24/7 Wall St. is reviewing additional analyst calls seen on Tuesday. We have included the latest call on each stock, as well as a recent trading history and the consensus targets among analysts. Note that analyst calls seen earlier in the day were on Broadcom, Deere, FedEx, Lululemon, Nvidia, Starbucks and more.

Anheuser-Busch InBev S.A./N.V. (NYSE: BUD): HSBC Securities upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold. The shares traded near $49 on Tuesday. The 52-week range is $47.23 to $67.91.

Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C): Odeon’s downgrade was to Hold from Buy. Shares traded near $49 on Tuesday, in a 52-week range of $43.44 to $73.72.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS): As J.P. Morgan downgraded the stock to Neutral from Overweight, the firm cut the $140 price target to $113. Shares have traded as high as $133.40 in the past year but were near $99 on Tuesday, which is down 14% year to date.

Dropbox Inc. (NASDAQ: DBX): BofA Securities initiated coverage with a Buy rating and a $34 price target. On Tuesday, shares traded near the bottom of the 52-week range of $19.07 to $32.57.

Ecolab Inc. (NYSE: ECL): Northcoast lifted its Neutral rating to Buy with a $188 price target. The stock was last seen trading near $166, in a 52-week range of $143.82 to $238.93.

Edison International (NYSE: EIX): Morgan Stanley lowered its Equal Weight rating to Underweight and cut the $69 price target to $62. The 52-week trading range is $54.98 to $73.32, and the share price was near $66 on Tuesday.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS): Odeon’s Hold rating dropped to Sell. The 52-week trading range is $277.84 to $426.16. Shares changed hands near $330 apiece on Tuesday.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS): Odeon downgraded this one from Hold to a Sell as well. The shares traded near $85 on Tuesday. The 52-week range is $72.05 to $109.73.

NextEra Energy Inc. (NYSE: NEE): Morgan Stanley’s upgrade to Overweight from Equal Weight included a price target hike to $99 from $94. Shares traded near $88 on Tuesday, in a 52-week range of $67.22 to $93.73.

Pure Storage Inc. (NYSE: PSTG): Zacks named this as its Bull of the Day stock. The analyst points out that not all chip stocks have struggled as the market has retreated. Shares dropped below $29 on Tuesday. The consensus price target of $39.16 would be an all-time high.

Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA): Wolfe Research upgraded the shares from Peer Perform to Outperform with a $360 price target. The stock was last seen trading near $271, in a 52-week range of $206.86 to $414.50.

Transocean Ltd. (NYSE: RIG): BTIG Research’s upgrade was to Buy from Neutral, and it has an $8 price target. On Tuesday, shares traded near $3.50, within the 52-week range of $2.32 to $5.56.


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