The futures were mixed to begin the new trading week. All the major indexes finished Friday lower, after a solid start early that abruptly turned around the noon hour on the east coast after the Republican contingent to the debt ceiling negotiations said they were “pressing the pause button” on the talks. Once again, the Republicans cited the lack of compromise on the budget-cutting in their bill and look to stand their ground as the country is $31 trillion in debt.
Treasury yields were higher again on Friday, with the 10-year benchmark note closing at 3.69%, the highest since March. Hawkish comments from Fed Chair Powell and some of the other committee members last week on the possibility of yet another increase in the federal funds rate in June helped to propel the selling. The two-year note closed flat at 4.27%, so the inversion between the two securities remains in place. Bond traders view the anomaly as a recession sign.
Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude finished modestly lower, despite calls from BofA Securities for $90 a barrel oil by the end of the year. Despite the flat close for the two benchmarks, oil finished its best week in a month. Natural gas also closed unchanged after a very solid at $2.59.
Gold rebounded Friday after a tough week for the bullion, closing up 1% at $1979. Bitcoin was slightly higher to finish a very difficult week that saw the cryptocurrency giant close at $26,841. Bitcoin was over $30,000 just a month ago.
24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week with a goal of finding fresh ideas for investors and traders alike. Some of these daily analyst calls cover stocks to buy. Other calls cover stocks to sell or avoid. Remember that no single analyst call should ever be used as a basis to buy or sell a stock. Consensus analyst target data is from Refinitiv.
These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Monday, May 22, 2023.
Amphenol Corp. (NYSE: APH): Credit Suisse downgraded the shares to Neutral from Outperform and cut its $91 target price to $77. The consensus target is $82.36. The shares closed on Friday at $75.80.
Apollo Global Management Inc. (NYSE: APO): Citigroup initiated coverage with a Buy rating and an $80 target price. That compares with the $76.04 consensus target and Friday’s closing print of $63.85.
Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT): Citigroup maintained a Buy rating and boosted its target price to $160 from $136. Needham also kept a Buy rating, and it nudged its $135 target price to $140. The consensus target is $128.53. The shares closed on Friday at $126.95.
ALSO READ: Top Energy Analysts See $90 Oil in 2023 and $100 in 2024: Grab 7 Top Dividend Stocks Now
BlackRock Inc. (NYSE: BLK): Citigroup initiated coverage with a Buy rating and a $750 target price. The consensus target is $696.11. The shares closed on Friday at $666.70.
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