Monday’s Top Wall Street Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Arm, Costco, Deere, Home Depot, Walmart, Wayfair and More

The futures were lower to kick off the last trading week for September and the third quarter. Once again, all the major indexes finished Friday and the week lower. Investors may need to remain wary, as the last 10 trading days of September are typically the worst 10-day period all year, and with institutional accounts looking to secure gains for the quarter, they could be selling any market strength.

The big news last week, and arguably the biggest weight on stocks going forward, is the “higher for longer” mantra that was offered up as the Federal reserve once again paused the interest rate hikes. The dot-plot signals one more increase, likely in November and then, if the data show a decline in inflation, the end of the hikes. There is the potential for rate reduction at the end of 2024.

Treasury yields were lower across the curve on Friday, after surging higher last week on the hawkish tone from the Fed that lifted many of the maturities to levels not seen since 2006. Thirty-year mortgage rates hit their highest level since 2000. Savvy investors scooped up the risk-free bonds in a big way and pushed the yield on the 10-year note down to 4.43%, while the two-year short paper closed trading Friday at 5.11%. While the inversion has narrowed some, recession in 2024 still is very possible.

Brent and West Texas Intermediate closed out a wild week Friday, as both of the major benchmarks closed higher, continuing the strong September move. Brent finished up 0.31% at $93.59, while WTI was last seen on Friday at $90.34, up 0.79%. Natural gas closed modestly higher at $2.64, up 1.26%.

Gold, which was hammered on Thursday, settled higher on Friday despite some data showing some strengthening in the economy. The data last week was consistent with rising stagflation risks as economic activity remains constrained and prices remain elevated and inflation sticky, especially with higher energy prices. The December contract finished the day at $1,944.60, up 0.26%. Bitcoin was slightly lower after a horrible week for the cryptocurrency giant, which closed Friday’s session at $26,535.60.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each weekday 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, September 25, 2023.

Aramark (NYSE: ARMK): Stifel reiterated a Buy rating with a target price of $45. The consensus target is $45.93, and the stock closed on Friday at $36.06.

Arm Holdings PLC (NYSE: ARM): Susquehanna initiated coverage on the recent huge IPO with a Neutral rating and a $48 price target. A Wall Street consensus has not been posted yet. The shares closed almost 2% lower on Friday at $51.32.

Azul S.A. (NYSE: AZUL): HSBC Securities started coverage on the Latin American carrier with a Buy rating and a $12.30 target price. The consensus target is up at $15.90. The stock closed on Friday at $8.72.

Charter Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: CHTR): Wells Fargo’s upgrade was to Overweight from Equal Weight, and it lifted its $450 target price to $550. The consensus target is just $480.71. The closing share price on Friday was $445.21.

Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO): Jefferies reiterated a Buy rating with a $59.50 target price. The consensus target is $57.76, and Friday’s close was at $53.57.

Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE: STZ): Goldman Sachs reiterated a Buy rating and lifted its target price to $305 from $277. The consensus target is $289.79, and Friday’s closing print was $256.03.

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