Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Alcoa, Apple, Brinker, Crocs, NuVasive, Texas Roadhouse, Under Armor and More

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The futures traded slightly lower Wednesday morning as investors digest Tuesday’s roller-coaster market ride. Those seem to be becoming more and more common. The selling this time was sparked by some weak economic data, causing some to think that perhaps growth is slowing.

Some investors have reconsidered what the nine-year bull market may bring in 2018 and beyond. It has become clear that the multiyear trend of buying pullbacks is now more vulnerable to sellers, volatility and each major news headline. Many investors are finding it harder to decide how they want their assets positioned for the longer term.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week to find new investing ideas and trading ideas for our readers. Some of the top analyst reports cover stocks to buy. Other analyst calls cover stocks to sell or to avoid.

Additional color and commentary has also been added on some of these daily analyst calls. The consensus analyst price target data are from the Thomson Reuters sell-side research service.

These were the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and other research calls from Wednesday, May 2, 2018.

Alcoa Inc. (NYSE: AA) was started with a Buy rating and a $65 target at Jefferies. The 52-week trading range for the aluminum giant is $29.55 to $62.35. The Wall Street consensus price target is $67.67, and shares closed trading on Tuesday at $51.99

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) may have been removed from the Focus List at Citigroup after the firm cited the massive capital return Apple is proposing (includes buying back $100 billion in stock), but there have been about 10 other key analyst calls early in the morning stepping all over each other to get ahead in the race. The stock traded up big Wednesday morning after the company posted huge results that beat analysts’ expectations Tuesday after the close, with iPhone sales coming in as expected after many analysts feared a big miss. The 52-week trading range is $142.20 to $183.50. The consensus price target for the tech giant is $192.23. Shares closed Tuesday at $169.10 and were up almost 5% in the premarket.

Brinker International Inc. (NYSE: EAT) saw its price target at Telsey Advisory Group raised to $49 from $39. The consensus target for the restaurant chain is $39.44. The 52-week trading range is $29.50 to $46.42. The shares ended Tuesday at $44.87. The company posted solid earnings after the bell on Tuesday.

Crocs Inc. (NASDAQ: CROX) saw its price target raised to $14 from $13 at Pivotal Research Group. That compares to a consensus target of $14.17. The 52-week range is $5.93 to $17.43, and the stock closed Tuesday at $15.67.

Mallinckrodt PLC (NYSE: MNK) was started with a Neutral rating at B. Riley FBR. The analyst has a $15 price objective, which compares to the consensus target of $24.66. The 52-week trading range is $12.75 to $49.12. The stock closed Tuesday at $13.10.

NuVasive Inc. (NASDAQ: NUVA) saw its target price lowered to $69 from $70 at Needham. That compares with a consensus price target of $62. The 52-week trading range is $44.62 to $81.68. The stock closed Tuesday at $53.14 and was down over 2% in premarket action.

Texas Roadhouse Inc. (NASDAQ: TXRH) was downgraded to Underweight from Neutral at Morgan Stanley. The 52-week range for the shares is $44.29 to $64.96, and the consensus price target is $61. The stock closed Tuesday at $63.52.

Under Armour Inc. (NYSE: UAA) is reiterated at Sell by B. Riley FBR, with a $9 price target. The company reported better-than-expected earnings on Tuesday but high inventory levels are sparking concern at some firms. Stifel reiterated its Buy rating and a $20 price target, which is up from $19. Telsey Advisory Group maintained a Market Perform rating and a $15 price objective. The 52-week trading range is $10.36 to $21.81. The consensus price target is $16.50. The shares closed Tuesday at $16.55 and were down slightly in the premarket action.

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