The futures were lower as we hit the midway point in the trading week. All the major indexes finished lower Tuesday, with the exception of the Dow Jones industrial average, which was able to grind out a modest gain. The big news after the market closed was Microsoft’s earnings, which came in mostly in line with Wall Street expectations and were what some analysts termed as “better than feared.”
Massive technology layoffs have continued this week, after Alphabet’s Google division laid off a stunning 12,000 to finish last week, Spotify trimmed its workforce by 6% and even industrial heavyweight 3M cut 2,500 jobs after missing earnings expectations. Layoffs combined with some historically bad fourth-quarter results are dampening the risk-on spirit.
Treasury yields were down across the curve, as the buyers returned while more disappointing economic data spilled out into the market. The weakening data, combined with debt ceiling issues, are stirring concerns over a potential default, which for now seems unlikely. The 10-year note closed at a 3.47% yield, while the two-year paper finished the day at 4.22%. The inversion between the two securities indicates to bond traders that recession is on the way.
After a solid run over the past week, both Brent and West Texas intermediate crude finished the day lower after media outlets suggested that OPEC will keep production unchanged when it meets next week. Production levels were cut by 2 million barrels per day in November, but most experts think the actual cut is more like 1 million barrels per day.
Natural gas was the big loser on the day, closing down almost 6% at $3.25 despite commentary that subzero temperatures across Asia had the potential to lift demand in a big way. Gold finished the day slightly higher while Bitcoin was flat after a big move higher recently.
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 Wednesday, January 25, 2023.
Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN): Telsey Advisory reiterated an Outperform rating but lowered its $140 target price to $125. The consensus target is higher at $136.30. The shares closed on Tuesday at $96.32.
Blackstone Inc. (NYSE: BX): J.P. Morgan upgraded shares of the money management giant to Overweight from Equal Weight. Its $104 target price ticked up to $105. The consensus target is just $96.09, and shares closed on Tuesday at $88.19.
Caesars Entertainment Inc. (NASDAQ: CZR): Stifel reiterated a Buy rating, and its $63 target price is now $68. The consensus target is $65.71. The stock closed on Tuesday at $51.09.
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Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG): Wells Fargo initiated coverage with an Overweight rating and a $1,800 target price. The consensus target is $1,772.14. The stock closed on Tuesday at $1,593.78.
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